Have arrived alone at a hotel in the country, on my way to somewhere.
Walked into the room – which is split level and with a balcony outside overlooking a lovely green valley – to be confronted with two beautiful yellow (greeny-yellow) chairs, standing side by side. The chairs have brought on some weeping. Impossible not to be thinking how it should be me and him sitting in them, not just me alone. A dreadful awareness of loneliness and grief – especially because it’s so quiet and rural, with wind in the trees and birds of prey circling overhead.
I must force myself to focus on living in the present, and enjoying the here and now. There’s nothing I can do about his absence, so I will just take in and enjoy things myself – the yellow chairs, the shiny curtains, the balcony, the view, the wind. The daffodils, the primroses, the palms. The swimming pool.
I’m becoming a connoisseur of hotel swimming pools – I’ve been away quite a bit and I keep choosing hotels with indoor pools, as it gives me a chance to get some exercise in a nicer environment. I’ve been using local public pools also, one of which in particular is modern and nice, but hotel pools are a different experience. No groups of noisy schoolkids, generally fewer people, and often with nice facilities, like jacuzzi, sauna and steam room. I do tend to find such places relaxing and escapist, which I suppose is the idea.
The one in this hotel has a spa pool with these sort of metal beds in – you lie on them and it bubbles up strongly under you. Wonderful! A new experience for me. I had four goes!
In the changing rooms, like in most places I’ve been, there’s a spin drier, to remove water from your costume. The other day when I tried an inner city gym, I asked a woman whether there was a spin drier anywhere, and she gave me such a bemused and incredulous look, like such an idea was quite ridiculous. I felt embarrassed but incredulous myself that someone had never come across a spin drier in a swimming pool changing room before. I guess maybe I’ve been spoilt by private pools.
After my swim and a wonderful shower, I return to my room – but have to try not to look at the two yellow chairs, so demanding of two people.