10 a.m. at the gym. Anyone who frequents the gym knows what this golden hour brings.
Immodesty, flirtation, and....oldies.
The group exercise room is packed full for the Silver Sneakers class and the pool is jamming out the tunes at decibels that I can hear even though my ears are filled with water and covered with a silicone swim cap. The locker rooms transform into this place of complete nudity. There is no use for a towel when you are 70+ years old. This skin needs to air dry now. It's a way of saying to me, "Enjoy it while you're young. One day your body will droop and sag in ways that you can't even imagine." Conversations about how ornery your husband is for not taking himself to the doctor or the news on the latest hip replacement float around the room. All the while sitting naked on the benches, not even a towel to shield you from any microorganism that might be resting on that very used surface. There must be an age at which modesty is not even taken into consideration. I hope I never reach it.
The fashion at this hour is yet another thing to behold. How long ago did you actually purchase that bathing suit? You know that they can rot through and become mostly see-through? Just checking.
Life has been long for most of them. Each one of them having a story. Each one of them used to be my age once. Now here they are. Possibly widowed. One man putting his arm around two of the ladies and shouting out to his friend in the hot tub how he is the luckiest guy to be in the pool with two beautiful ladies. Possibly still married. Married so long that silence has become a form of communication.
Here they are. Making the best of what's left in life. Meeting up with their friends at the gym every morning at 10 a.m. Doing what they can to take care of their aging bodies.
I silently swim in the one lane left open during water aerobics. The waves of 30 people moving in time with music that was popular years before I was born splash over me. I really like 10 a.m. There is so much I can learn from them. So many stories they have to tell. So much life I have yet to know. I put my head back in the water and keep swimming. My stroke seems to keep time with "....sugar pie honey bunch....you know I love you..." I smile.
See you tomorrow morning at 10 a.m.