For the person who has everything… Well, I bet they don’t have THIS!
After yesterdays post about my problem with Swedish swim halls, let me turn my attention to American swim halls.
I forgot to mention yesterday that the shower area in Swedish locker rooms is just one giant room. No place for privacy. In America, everyone is so terrified of seeing another stranger naked that most of the places I’ve encountered have seperate stalls with curtains. On the surface, this could sound nice, but for some reason, it just seems dirtier and nastier when you are enclosed in a tiny damp space used constantly by naked strangers. If you even touch the wall or curtain, you might be contaminated!
Also, it seems that in America, if you don’t use the private stalls for showering or changing, you must be some sort of person who likes to expose themselves. Luckily, I warned my Swedish husband about this when he took one of our boys into a changing/shower room at a pool facility. I ran after him shouting, “You have to use a stall!”
“But why?” he asked. “They’re all full and kind of nasty.”
“I know, but that’s the way it is here. Otherwise you’re a pervert in this country!”
I lost my modesty years ago in Sweden. Really, no one cares if you’re naked around here. Nobody is interested. I think America is too obsessed with Hollywood airbrushed models and thinks everyone wants to stare. Seriously, no one in a public pool hall has a model body or skin. I think we can all agree that I don’t want to see you and you don’t want to see me.
I don’t know what the solution is. Both methods don’t work for me. I suppose for me it would be best to already arrive in my swimsuit, walk through a cleansing waterfall on my way to the pool and jump on in.
It’s often very cold here in Stockholm ( a surprise, I know!), so the town is full of indoor swim halls for people who would like to swim year round.
I used to be one of these people until I encountered the Shower Room Mafia.
The Shower Room Mafia exists at every swim hall in Stockholm. Large, naked old women (over 70) stand in the shower area staring at everyone and ready to yell if they don’t think you are showering properly. I’m not kidding. If you don’t completely strip down BEFORE your swim and scrub off with soap on every piece of your body, they start shouting at you. My thoughts:
1. I have no idea how everyone else showers because I’m not STARING at them!
2. I feel a full body rinse is enough. The chlorine is there to get what I missed.
Also, these women never move. I can go into the swim hall and stay for an hour and when I come back they will still be standing naked, chatting in the shower. You know, they do make cafés where normal people go to chat with their friends. Plus it’s cheaper to buy a cup of coffee than to pay the money to enter a swim hall. Of course, then they don’t get to scream at naked women and show off parts of their bodies no one wants to see, but they really should try the café option. It’s probably better for their blood pressure.
My husband tells me it’s the same on the men’s side. I hope this isn’t where my life is headed in 40 years. I need to develop better hobbies.
Why isn’t there a cinnamon shower gel? I’ve seen chocolate. I’ve even seen amber. Amber? That’s not even a real flavor, but they have it! So why no cinnamon? I’d buy it. Maybe I’ll just start rubbing some in my skin. When I walk by people, I’d like to hear them say things like, “Umm.. something smells like Christmas,” or “I have a craving for oatmeal and I don’t know why.”