I thought December was the busiest time of year! If so, June is not far behind. Calendars are filled with end-of-school activities, graduations, weddings, Father’s Day, summer camp and vacation plans. Our family also welcomed a visit from the stork, with the birth of Rick Edward (compliments of our nephew and niece).
The transition from spring to summer is a time of celebration. The weather is interwoven into most of these events, and perhaps the very reason they occur at this time. June can be a little unpredictable. One day can bring cool, foggy and even drizzly conditions. By the next day, the thermometer can easily reach 90 degrees. But for the most part, June weather is mild and willing to cooperate with our plans.
As a kid growing up in La Crescenta, we had one of the few “built in” swimming pools. By mid-June the outside air temperature was consistent enough to keep the water at a comfortable, but cool 78 degrees (no heater).
Coincidently, summer vacation also began. We basically stepped straight out of the classroom and directly into the pool, stopping only long enough to shed our school clothes and don swimsuits. As I was only 3 years old, during those early pool days I had to wait for my big sisters to take me into to the water. By the end of the first summer I was “swimming like a fish.” I’m afraid, YMCA swimming lessons came a little after the fact – I was 5 or 6 years old. Not good!
Perhaps since backyard pools were still somewhat of a novelty, water safety was not always considered. But I will give my parents credit for the pool rules they did enforce: 1) Wait one hour after eating; 2) No diving in the shallow end; 3) No running on the deck; 4) A grown up had to watch; 5) Lock pool gates when finished.
As the center of entertainment for the summer, it was not unusual to spend the entire day in the pool. Plus it offered a much needed reprieve from the heat, as not all homes were air conditioned. By summer’s end, with suntanned (no sunscreen back then) little bodies, memories of good times were in place.
One could say those were “the good old days.” But pool safety has improved, for the best.
Here are a few good tips. For a complete list, check the Red Cross.
1. Swim lessons for all children (pool or not!)
2. Parents should watch their own children (unless otherwise planned)
3. Learn CPR
4. Keep pools and hot tubs securely fenced and locked
5. Have a phone within reach
With these in mind, our pool is open for the season. Perfect swimming weather, with temperatures close to 90. Coastal clouds will dominate this weekend, cooling us by 10-15 degrees. Don’t be fooled, for next week the heat returns!
Sue Kilpatrick is a
Crescenta Valley resident and
Official Skywarn Spotter for the
National Weather Service. Reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org.