The Optimistic SwimmerSaturday, July 09, 2011
|Lauren at the Holiday Inn Express|
Many years ago when I was a boy (very spoiled and very rude) I would complain to my mother about everything. Sometime when I was 14 a kind gentleman would pick us up at our home on Sierra Madre in the Lomas de Chapultepec section of Mexico City and take us both to the American School in Tacubaya where my mother taught physics, chemistry and algebra and where I attended the 6th grade. The car pool made getting to the school a lot easier.
The gentleman had a lovely (it looked odd in those days, but he was extremely proud of it ) Raymond Loewy designed 1953 Studebaker. I remember distinctly complaining about the lack of legroom in the back and actually saying,” I think this car is ugly.”
In short I was not a terribly adorable young boy and my mother had to wait until I was 21 (I had returned for a short holiday from my stint in the Argentine Navy) to tell me, “As your mother I have always loved you but I had no obligation to like you. But now you seem to have changed and I feel that I can say that I do like you.”
My mother one day offered me the joke of the set of young twins who went down on Christmas Eve to open their gifts. One was an optimist and the other was a pessimist. The pessimist rejected his brand new red tricycle saying that it was dangerous and that he would fall and break his skull. The optimist opening a bag full of horse shit was running, all excited, around the house looking for his pony.
In our trip returning from Texas we stopped in the little town of Shiprock, New Mexico which is really a town populated mostly by Navajos. I wanted to see the striking basalt structure for which the town is called as it was central to many of the novels of Tony Hillerman (I have read them all). The town offered only three places to dine. These were KFC, McDonald’s and Burger King. Earlier that morning the girls had not wanted to wake up for the largish breakfasts that are now offered as part of the package for staying the night in hotels near interstate highways. I knew they would be angry. I asked Rebecca if she had a choice. There was no answer as she was slumbering. We then asked Lauren who opted for the Burger King.
|Lauren at the Santa Fe Ranch|
When Rebecca woke up she protested on our choice. When we arrived, within minutes she said, “This place sucks, it has no Wi-Fi.” Since Rebecca had facebook in her iTouch I could understand her complaint.
Having Wi-Fi and or high speed internet was of supreme importance to Rebecca in whatever hotel we stayed. For Lauren her needs were a tad simpler. All she wanted was a swimming pool. Some of the hotels had nice outdoor pools but most (particularly the Holiday Inn Express) had indoor pools lit by dawn-of-the-dead florescent units. But as long as Lauren could swim she did not mind. This forced me to accompany her and even swim a few laps which is good exercise for my increasingly painful arthritis.
Time will tell if Lauren the optimist will grow up a bit and become the complainer that her grandfather once was.