Notes from the Road #33: One Year Later

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It all feels different this year than it did a year ago, and definitely the year before that. Even though the place itself hasn’t changed, and neither has the scenery, somehow it feels brand-new, yet timeless all the same.

It was time for a trip to the pool w/ my season pass. I was unable to get one last year, since no J-word. I took advantage of the half-price admission days and times once in a blue moon, but that was it for last year.

The weekend before this one, the weather sucked ass, and it was the wrong time of the month for me anyways. My summer job’s taking so much outta me, but after what happened last year, I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Hell, I was willing to suffer 15-hour workdays, 7 days a week if that’s what it would take to convince anyone to stoop to my level.

I’d have only been there for 2-ish months anyway since school’s out for summer, so they wouldn’t have had long to suffer w/ me in the scheme of things.

Anything’s better than what happened last year, and I wouldn’t wish that on anyone. Not even an enemy. No, even an enemy’s too good for that.

My bike needs to be fixed, but hopefully next payday, I’ll go hit up the bike repair company I used before all this happened. They’re still in business, and I’ll see what their schedule’s like first.

Otherwise, I’m riding very carefully, and as little as possible.

My old tape player/radio that I got from Urban Outfitters before all this happened is on the fritz, and I was getting tired of the headphone wires getting caught up in everything.

After a little homework rabbit hole, I found these headphones (not a sponsored link!), and my rechargeable batteries work like a boss.

That reminds me, I gotta get more AA rechargeable batteries. Maybe a trip to Wally World’s in order, since they got some at a decent price.

I no longer have to deal w/ the street harassment and the abuse drivers love to sling at me like they got no tomorrow to do it, thanks to those headphones.

Since the classic country station on the AM dial doesn’t come in worth a damn on this thing, the classic country station on the FM dial it is. It’ll do until I get home. There’s just something about a trip to the pool, going through the old part of town and the abandoned, dilapidated buildings, and crossing the bridge over a waterway, w/ classic country playing, and idk how to describe it.

A trip to the pool definitely feels like it calls for country music, to me anyways. I would’ve listened to the Cubs game on another AM station, but for some reason, the interference is nearly constant, and I can’t seem to get the station to come in on the headphones outside of my house.

There’s a fuckton of construction going on, and it’s endless, so maybe that has something to do w/ it?

Whatever the cause of the interference on my headphones, a life jacket is definitely on my shopping list in the very near future. Even if it’s not in the colorway I was hoping for. I don’t have to be on brand in that department, the way I figure it.

Somehow even the pool feels different this year compared to a year ago, even though it’s the same damn place, if that makes sense.

Armed w/ my season pass, I bike over to the pool, w/ my stuff in my bag. It’s the only one close enough to my house, and while it’s not handicapped-accessible, it’ll do.

I’ve been going there since the summer of the pandemic. Up until then, I went to another pool, until some guy hit on me there. Sad to say, it was one of the lifeguards, too, smdh.

This pool, it is, going forward. It’s not in the best part of town, according to some ppl. It’s quite the ride, but the tradeoff’s worth it.

I used to stay until closing time, but I haven’t felt like sticking around for that long. I wanted to get home in time for the games, w/o the interference on the radio.

I wished everyone could be here. I wished I could bring the ppl from my summer job and my regular job w/ me. We’d have to stay in the shallow end, after what happened last year, but I hope they could deal w/ that.

I could feel the sun reflecting off the surface of the water, and while I had the Zinka on my schnozz, I didn’t wanna take any chances, so I decided to call it a day. It was time to hit the showers, wrap my hair up, and head home.

It was late afternoon/early evening, and I stopped on the bridge to watch boaters go down the river on my way home, classic country on the headphones playing.

I wondered what it was like and how it was to be able to do that. I’ve never been on a boat before, and will likely never be on one in my lifetime, so if you have, you’ll have to tell me.

I rode home, passing by this place my mom used to go to, w/o giving out too much detail. I had nothing but rotten candidate experiences there, and nothing but rotten experiences actually going there also. Guess it’s no surprise I was still literal dogshit to them even now, just like I was back in college.

I feel for whoever they chose over me, even to this day.

My main route’s a goner, thanks to the oceans of construction going on, detour it is. It took me a bit longer to make it home than I would have on the main route, but whatevs. Every little bit helps in terms of losing the weight, eh?

I came home to some soup I meal-prepped, sitting on the stove in an old dutch oven w/ the lid on it. I changed outta my swimsuit, let it hang on the bathroom door, and put my cover-up on the front porch. It smelled of the yellow Baby Magic wash I’d gotten on sale, and for some reason, it really says ‘summer,’ in addition to a throwback down memory lane.

Time to have a nice early dinner, and catch the away game on the radio, while I play catch-up on emails and social media, and do some window-shopping.

Missed the previous installments? No worries! I gotcha: 32, 31, 30, 29.

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