It has been hot and with the heat my thoughts swept up a memory of my parents second home in Diablo. A whim of a purchase but for those brief years they owned it, which was mere miles from our home, we shared quite frankly, the best of times together.
My mom and Papa "let their hair down", so to speak. They dressed casually, which for my mom was quite a feat! Even her casual slacks and "t-shirts" were designer but there was less jewelry and though she didn't wear sandals she wore her Daniel Green slippers, gold or silver, without hose.
Papa somehow managed to have old worn pants. Who knows how he was able to hold onto them without my mom throwing them in the trash. Add a polo shirt, comfy slip on shoes and he puttered around the house tending the yard and pool.
Yes they had a home with a pool and he habitually would fuss with the equipment or cleaning the pool of leaves. Best yet was blowing up pool floats for the girls to play upon. Of course the girls were excited, giggly, squabbling, loud, generally being kids at a pool, but this wasn't any old pool, it was their Nana and Papa's and nothing was better! There was a float of a dolphin, a whale, a giraffe, a bear, rings big and small and the brightest colors of these toys she could find. There were diving rings, diving sticks, and classic diving for coins as well as games of Marco Polo. The pool wasn't huge by any means yet somehow toys, kids and parents fit just fine.
My mom even donned a swimsuit from time to time which was a rare event. No splashing as she waded in and waded out then off to a chair in the shade to watch over her family. Papa would float lazily on his back from end to end of the pool, his belly floating above the pool level.
When children swim and play they get hungry and Nana always had snacks. But what stands out in my memory was the Jiffy Pop Popcorn she would faithfully bring out. Not done in the microwave but the classic one in the aluminum pan that you would shake constantly across the burner of the stove and watch it balloon out till the popping stopped.
That simple snack brought back memories of my own childhood! We would all dig in like hungry vultures to the last kernels. I'm not sure if popcorn is a typical pool snack but it was what we had along with Pepsi Cola, Root Beer or 7 Up to wash down the salty flavor.
Papa bought an ice cream maker one year for a summer party they had. I went out back to help him and learned a bit about making home made ice cream. It was electric that you added the ice and salt while it churned and churned. I've never had better ice cream than fresh made that day. He and I brought the bucket into the kitchen once it was thick and creamy where my mom would busily scoop out the ice cream into smaller containers for the dessert later. Papa and I proceeded to scrap off the soft, creamy ice cream from the plastic blade with our fingers over the kitchen sink, making sure nothing was left and wanting more.