Jersey love: moonlight swim.

We arrived in New Jersey on a Friday afternoon, just in time for the last "Moonlight Swim" of the season at the Madison Community Pool.  As I've shared so many times before, this pool is like none other. First of all, it has a social director, who just happens to be my mother.  Throughout the pool season from Memorial Day to Labor Day, there are all kinds of events from luaus to magic shows to jazz bands to massages.

The Moonlight Swim is magical - the pool stays open until 10:00pm, and you get to swim under the stars, eat delicious food, and dance to live music by local artists.  In the evening, the grass is actually chilly under your feet, and townspeople are wrapped in sweatshirts and towels as they contentedly sit, watch, and listen from the lawn.  Others swim laps or gather in groups in the water and chat.  The crickets in the woods that surround the pool on three sides provide the real soundtrack for the evening.

So, being in town to catch the last Moonlight Swim?  I could hardly pull on my bathing suit quickly enough.

As I unpacked the diaper bag and re-stuffed it with swim diapers and towels, my mom informed me that there had been a few changes to how she attends Moonlight Swims now.  "Oh, really?" I asked, my interest piqued.  "Yes," she replied matter-of-factly.  "I don't swim at the Moonlight Swim.  I dance.  I wear a bathing suit, my body glittah, and sneakuhs and socks.  And tonight, I'm gonna dance with my grand-daughta."

And that is exactly what she did.  If only we could all be so uninhibited.

While Mimi danced with her granddaughter, I had the luxury of swimming laps {by myself!} under the moonlight.  As I backstroked down the length of the Olympics-sized lanes, I aligned myself with the swim team pennant rope to stay straight, and my ears immersed underwater muted everything.  It was just me, the water, and the moon overhead.  I stroked slowly, not wanting to speed up this peaceful moment.  I wanted to bottle up that feeling and bring it back to Texas.

From the water, I could spot my mother across the pool, whisking my daughter across the deck to the Oldies as dusk settled.  My parents danced cheek-to-cheek to their favorite song, "Wonderful Tonight" by Eric Clapton, as they usually do. 

At almost closing time, I exited the water and went to find a towel.  My toes were pruned, my hair a tangled mess.  My daughter's eyelids were heavy.  Mom's friends were sitting on the benches watching her, wishing they all had the guts to dance in front of a hundred people in a bathing suit and tennis shoes.  And I knew the evening was nothing short of perfection.