Pretending to be idly rich and bored is boring. A cold has kept me from the hotel pit for a few days, but I’m feeling better and willing to give the place another try. Wearing my favorite workout gear I trek past the croquet lawn to the pit. I knew there were adults who play croquet, but I’d never really seen any until this week. Since I wasn’t up to the pit I spent some time sitting in a wicker chair watching grownups play croquet. I played croquet when I was a kid and I remember it being much livelier than what I have been watching. Back then the rules were – hit your ball, hit your opponents’ ball, hit your opponent if necessary. It was similar to miniature golf and moved along quickly.
I have no idea what the rules are to the adult version. All the players wear white. They carry their mallets in custom made canvas bags like a pool shark does his cue. They stand around the lawn leaning on their mallets, taking turns hitting their ball from wicket to wicket – I think. There are little flags on the wickets that they flip up and down, why I have no idea. Maybe if I didn’t drift off to sleep between moves, or shots, or whatever they call it I would know more, but the game resembles a constipated version of billiards played on a golf green and I’m hard pressed to stay awake. Maybe it’s the nighttime cold medicine I took by mistake, but still it would take a lot of caffeine to keep me awake for this.
My last trip to the hotel pit was rather uneventful but that didn’t keep me from passing on my observations to you. You can thank me later. Today the place is hopping, or rather moseying, as the average age here is C+25. Hubby and I are among the youngsters today, something that we haven’t been in a while. The same half rack I used the other day is available so I climb aboard and program the computer to burn some fat off. The lounge chair bikes are popular with the older crowd. There’s one guy with earphones on, the wires going to a device in his breast pocket (emphasis on the breast – I’ll get to that later). I’m wondering if he’s listening to music or his pacemaker. Could be either one. The woman on the end is wearing a diamond bracelet worth more than our entire net worth. Add in the ring on her finger and I’ll throw in our life insurance policies too. Her resort logo sweatshirt cost more than my entire workout wardrobe combined. I’ve been to the gift shop, I know.
Then there’s the guy at the stair step machine. You’ve seen these machines. They’re like climbing stairs, only you just have pedals to push. I’m pretty sure you have to actually put your feet on the pedals to derive any benefit from the machine. This dude has the television on, his water bottle in the rack and he’s standing in front of the machine reading his newspaper. After a while he folds the paper, gathers his stuff, and leaves. That was a good workout if I ever saw one.
This place only has one ‘real’ bike and Mr. Adidas (I’ve named him this because he’s dressed head to toe in the latest Adidas ‘look at me, I go to the gym’ attire) has claimed it today. This is his routine. No kidding. He hops on the bike, opens the Wall Street Journal (The default, left on your door newspaper here), pedals furiously for exactly one minute (yes, I timed it), folds his newspaper, wipes his brow with the towel draped over the handlebars, drinks a swig from his Fuji water bottle, gets off the bike, disappears into the weight room for four minutes, returns to bike to repeat the process. I spent half an hour on the half rack and his routine never varied. He was still at it when I left.
On the half rack next to me is a guy, a C, with a cell phone stuck to his ear, talking away. There is a sign on the mirrored wall about eight feet directly in front of us that says – Please be courteous to other guests - Do not talk on cell phones while on machines. I suppose he can’t read and I really don’t want to hear his conversation with his wife, or whatever she is. However, his voice overrides the music from my iPod and I am now privy to his travel plans, among other things.
I’ve had time to watch a little television since I’ve been here and one thing that stands out is the abundance of commercials for male breast reduction surgery. In SoCal we get plenty of plastic surgery ads. Most of them are female breast enlargement, teeth whitening and anything else that will help a woman land a gig as a trophy wife. I couldn’t account for the plethora of male breast reduction ads - until today. As I scanned the geriatric crowd around me I understood. ‘Nuf said.
This is a first class place and to prove it they have a complimentary beverage bar near the door. There’s coffee, tea, water, and I suspect, Geritol, for parched participants. What else would explain the crowd gathered around the counter? I’d be there too if Steve or Andre was over there, but I haven’t seen anyone I think could possibly be them. Hubby and I finish up around the same time and drop our plush, for our convenience towels, in the hamper and head out.
I need a nap. Time to go watch some croquet.