There’s a white, plastic grate sort of thing just below the edge of the pool at the Y. I don’t know if it’s meant to be a step or to catch debris or why it’s there, really, but there was a woman sitting on the side of the pool with her feet resting on the grate thingy. I want you to understand that she was sitting on the side of the pool. Her feet were wet because she had them resting in the pool. So what I’m saying to you is that her proximity to the open water called a ‘pool’ was very, very close. She was wearing a tropical-print swimsuit and massive sunglasses.
There were loads of kids doing what kids do in a pool- jump, splash, flip, kick, and swim. There was a cluster of kids just in front of the lady. They were laughing and having fun. A couple of them decided to “race” to the rope that separates to pool into two halves. When they did, they turned their backs to her (BY the pool) and kicked ferociously. The splash they created wet the woman’s hair a little bit and she took off her hugantic sunglasses to wipe the water droplets off. She was pissed.
When the kids made it to the rope and then turned to swim back, she said to them “Hey- you kids need to watch it. You just splashed me. You need to be respectful of people. Go over there” and she motioned toward the other side of the pool. The kids kind of looked at each other and then moved away from her. She was rude to them and they were confused.
She was still wiping off the lenses of her sunglasses when she looked at me, rolled her eyes, and said “These kids aren’t taught respect at home anymore. I’m sitting right here- plain as day- and they go to kicking and splashing.” I guess she expected me to nod in agreement but instead I said “You know you’re sitting on the side of the pool, right? Your feet are literally in the pool.” “What’s that got to do with it? I should be able to sit here without being splashed” she said. While I understand her argument, she was not drenched. At worst, she was sprinkled. “It just seems to me that they’re doing what you’re meant to do in a pool. You could always sit by the inside pool where it’s much less active” I replied. She was having none of it. She was looking for a fight. I’m about a thousand percent sure that she sat on the edge of the pool just so she could bitch at whatever kid had the misfortune of splashing her first. “I can see that you weren’t taught respect either” she said. “Oh, no, I was,” I said “but I also respect kids being kids and I can recognize when adults are picking on them. You’re picking on them.” She murmured something and went back to her chair.
As fate would have it, we ended up at the door to leave at the same time. I hustled to get there first so that I could hold the door open for her. That’s what I was taught to do- hold the door for others. It’s a simple act of kindness and respect. She didn’t even say “Thank you” y’all! I don’t know about you, but where I come from, you say “Thank you” when someone does something nice for you. Courtesy, respect and kindness are all kind of the same thing, no? She must not have been taught that at home…