I change at the YMCA about a block from work. By the time I got to the showers, the locker room was pretty empty, but I could hear the sound of kids taking swimming lessons.
"Quack, quack, quack," they called out as I piled my clothes on a bench outside the shower stall.
"Splash, splash, splash," I heard as I lathered my hair.
Then I heard: ... "Split, splat, split... " and "There's somebody in there!"
I looked through a small gap in the curtain to see a tiny tot just staring at me. I waved, smiled and pulled the curtain tighter. She just stared, wide-eyed. As I went about my business, a group of 3- and 4-year-olds joined her, but they weren't interested in me. They were "freeeeezing."
They all started shaking and shivering and whining ... yes, cute, but whining ... about being "freeezing."
A mom joined them and I was sure she'd turn on one of the other showers and warm them under the water, but nope. She'd been here before.
She drove them like a Border Collie toward two big wall-mounted hair dryers and popped the dryers on. Her gaggle of tots bounced around underneath, laughing and wiggling as they warmed up.
All this took about 30 seconds and then they were in the next room calling out the numbers on all the lockers. Mom was making a game of drying off and getting dressed. There they went.
And then there I went.
"Quack, quack, quack," all the way back to work, with a smile on my face.
Swimmer photo by Flickr user jessebezz