During the winter, we have to turn off the swimming pool pump/filter and winterize it so it doesn’t freeze and crack. Leaves fall into the pool and muddy animals with dirty feet swim in it. Let’s not even think about goldfish poop. The pool might not be green if we poured chlorine into it, but the goldfish, as disrespectful as they are, would not like it. The herons would love to be able to see the goldfish, though.
In spring, when it’s safe to turn the pump/filter back on, we drain the pool and get out as much of the goldfish poop as possible.
There are three garden hoses draining the pool. The water goes to the little creek in the front yard. Sometimes it sneaks into the downstairs on the way, like it did this time.
Overnight isn’t enough time to drain the pool all the way. We didn’t want to leave the goldfish High & Dry, anyway.
By the time our volunteer arrived after school, the pool had drained enough to get in and bail. As careful as Jillian and The Bartender were with their precision bucketing, Stacy’s job was to watch for accidental fish escapes. She also took some pictures.
Once people are inside the pool, the sludge from the bottom gets stirred up, making it obvious why we have to clean it out. This is probably a swimming pool maintenance technician’s nightmare.
Next comes the goldfish search and rescue operation. They are racing goldfish, not regular ones, and very, very hard to catch.
The goldfish get to live in my bathtub for a few days. One jumped out into the bathtub water, but none of the others did. It was probably just an ill-fated reconnaissance run.
Stacy was working hard, taking all these pictures.
I was working hard the whole time. Supervision is very hard work, especially when nobody is paying attention to union rules.
Next, the same three garden hoses are flushed, and they go back into the pool. The water goes the other direction this time.
Finally the swimming pool is full of water! Guess who jumps in to swim right away? No, not me. I’m scared of invisible water.
The clean pool water has too much chlorine and the fish really hate that stuff. Stacy changes the fish bucket water slowly over the next few days while the chlorine evaporates out of the pool water.
Mrs. Mallard watches for me, but I’m not going to swim in that invisible water quite yet. Plus, do you remember what my pool steps looked like?
See the prayer flags? The white one on the right covers some bite marks on the outside of the pool. Nobody knows how they got there.
Fortunately, there is a plethora of wading pools around here, plus a couple of delightful mudholes. I can wait a day for my new pool steps.