It seemed a lot easier to beat the heat when you were a kid. Fifty cents and a bike on a summer's day worked quite well from my recollection.
Pool hopping was an easy, inexpensive and thrilling way to chill out. In Kerrisdale, where I lived, we would congregate at my house in mid-morning to plan out the day's activities.
If the temperature were to be in the 80s, pool hopping would definitely be on the itinerary. We would ride our bikes up to the denser part of town.
On Yew, Larch, 37th and 38th avenues there were five outdoor apartment pools that would beckon our attention.
There was no lingering in pool hopping. Climb the fence or boost each other up a wall, dive in the deep end, yell a little bit and then climb right back out again.
Effective water commandoes could do the route in about five minutes flat.
A 15-minute ride in the warm summer air would have us dry and back at my house in time for lunch. Sometimes on these hot days my mom would make us vanilla ice cream and strawberries as the main course. A simple idea but if you are nine years old, this was really quite something.
As the cool lunch settled we would lie on the back lawn and wait for large streams from the sprinkler to rotate our way, tense in anticipation of the coming cool water. I can still see the sparkly surge at the top of the sprinkler as the momentum carried it our way. It seemed the apex was at least 30 feet high back then.
After a lunch break we would usually bike down to Spanish Banks. A quick stop at one of the small corner stores that dotted the route was mandatory. Riding a bike down the Blenheim hill holding a towel and a bag of candy while eating a Popsicle was challenging ... sort of like texting while driving, I suppose.
A low tide at Spanish Banks was a perfect place to spend a summer afternoon. A favourite pastime was to dig a massive hole and wait for the tide to inch its way in. These hot pools were often decorated and feature adorned.
I fondly remember those carefree days of summer but am happy to say today that even 40 years later, I enjoy similar experiences right here at home in Tsawwassen.
The pool hopping is gone. I have to invite myself over to pool owners now. That is lame, I know, but I still enjoy a Popsicle and ice cream and strawberries for lunch and I especially enjoy Boundary Bay.
The past few days have seen mid tides with no wind. Unbelievably warm water makes this some of the best swimming anywhere ... period. Moving in to a low tide cycle next week will see throngs of explorers checking tidal pools out to the border marker.
The water is as clean as there is and Boundary Bay, along with Tsawwassen Beach, routinely check in as the cleanest beaches in Metro Vancouver.
Do yourself a favour this weekend. Buy a Popsicle or a freezee and head down to the beach to dig a hole and sit in it. You will be glad you did.
Happy B.C. Day everyone!