Wednesday, June 18, 2008

American Ganga

I’ve been thinking about water in the way of rivers, lakes and ocean beaches. My post from two days ago about going to the lake every summer reminded me that not everyone went to their lakes for the summer. Some people did just fine visiting their local lakes, ponds or pools. While growing up our family was a member of a local Country Club.

No we weren’t rich or snooty. The Country Club membership was part of the benefits package where my father worked. All employees received this benefit no matter if you were the CEO or the lowest paid part-time employee inn the guard shack. Imagine employment with benefits. This was an age where companies treated their employees like family and usually got the same feelings in return.

Eventually this Country Club was sold to the County and became a County Park. It was and probably still is a wonderful park. It had two large sand bottom lakes for swimming and a large lake between for fishing and boating. There where tennis, handball and basketball courts and probably a hundred picnic spaces in different parts of the woods.

Having gone there since a child I still went there after it became a County Park without much thought other than the fact I now had to pay a fee to get in. One hot summer day I found myself in a traffic jam back on the old country road that serviced this park. I figured there must have been a wreck because this road never saw that much traffic.

As I inched ahead I saw what the problem was; the park had been discovered. There were thousands of people visible at the lake and all the cars were in line to go into the park. It looked like the Ganga. I could no longer imagine swimming in lakes where there were potentially so many that could be pissing in the water at once.

When I was near the entrance to the park I continued down the road to one of my favorite little known spots on the Ramapo River where I knew no one would be. There I could swim in peace.


Blogger Auntie said...

Guy, isn't it Ganges? Isn't Ganga something else ?

5:28 AM  
Blogger Beth said...

How privileged we are to be able to have (or to find) our own private places to swim and enjoy the water.
I do not like crowds at or in a lake...

6:03 AM  
Blogger Hahn at Home said...

I was all looking forward to stories of pot smoking.

7:18 AM  
Blogger The Guy Who Writes This said...

Auntie, From Wikipedia: The Ganges also Ganga pronunciation (help·info), Devanāgarī: गंगा, IAST: Gaṅgā in most Indian languages) is a major river in the Indian subcontinent flowing east through the eponymous plains of northern India into Bangladesh. The 2,510 km (1,557 mi) river begins at the Gangotri Glacier in the Indian state of Uttarakhand, in the central Himalayas, and drains into the Bay of Bengal through its vast delta in the Sunderbans. It has enjoyed a position of reverence for millennia among India's Hindus, by whom it is worshipped in its personified form as the goddess Ganga.

Beth, The further away you go the better it gets.

Lori, Sorry, but I'll do one on that topic for you soon.

7:29 AM  
Blogger Auntie said...

Guy - you did it just to boost your hits today !!! You are a "hit-whore" ! LOL

11:24 AM  
Blogger The Guy Who Writes This said...

Do you see a counter on this blog?

1:30 PM  
Blogger Mom of Three said...

That's how I grew to feel about the Southern California Pacific Ocean. On hot days, there were literally thousands of people in the water. There were so many that surfers would hit each other, Boogie Boarders would collide with other people. It was ridiculous and it was also gross.

11:43 PM  
Blogger The Guy Who Writes This said...

One good thing is that the more that go to the popular places the more space we have at our hidden places.

7:10 AM  
Blogger Colonel Panic said...

why are you a snob?

not name calling just asking a question.

What drives this in you? Antipathy for people, sense of superiority over others, fear based neurosis?

Btw i am with ya- I like to go where you are not either. In fact I dont want to be in your special place if its special to you even if you arent there. It would feel kinda tainted:-O

8:55 PM  
Blogger The Guy Who Writes This said...

Colonel, have you ever been swimming with people and suddenly the water feels warmer as you go through one spot? The only thing I hate more than being alone is being with people.

5:21 AM  

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