Writing Challenge: day 27

pool at the Underwater Swimmer School circa 1954

pool at the Underwater Swimmer School circa 1954

On my second day of day 5 of the Armchair Genealogist‘s writing challenge, I moved on to the next two areas to find details in your stories’ setting. They are senses and dress. For an exercise I decided to pick a scene and list things I imagined would be there. I picked the first day the students get into the swimming pool. Here is what I wrote:

2 – Senses

Sights: clear blue sky, bright sun, flat horizon, water on the cement deck, slightly nervous men, calm water of the empty pool, low single story building with high square windows the wide flat trim and a deep overhanging roof with thin metal polls supporting it painted in white, two shaped metal bars where the ladder to get into the pool is, surrounding buildings; three-story building with uniform windows, a large grass area with huge banks of lights, shade area made by a simple roof with thick white post along one side of the pool, some benches.

Sounds: honking cars, gurgle of the pool drains, nervous shuffling of a few feet, deep authoritative voice of the instructor, thud of equipment bumping against body parts, the splash as the first student steps off into the pool in full gear.

Smells: chlorine, wet cement, nervous sweat, salt on the breeze

Taste: salty sweat, chemical clean on the mouth piece

Feel: the rough surface of the cement deck on bare feet, the solid weight of the air tanks, the feel of the regulator in your mouth, anticipation of what temperature the water will be, butterflies in the pit of your stomach

3 – Dress

Basic swimming trunks of khaki fabric with clinching belt-like contraption in the front to adjust the fit. One instructors wearing simple hat with a bill in the front. Air tanks, face mask, hoses and mouthpiece with regulator, stiff rubber flippers


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