Fitness · Life

The Mean Old Man and the Cool Old Lady

For almost a year my YMCA has been remodeling. In just a few short weeks it will be complete and I’ll have a gorgeous  pool, (eww) hot tub, larger fitness/weight room with treadmills that have TVs attached, more spacious yoga room, additional parking stalls and revamped child watch area. I’m looking forward with great anticipation to the completion of this project because, well, it’s been a major pain in the butt.

First, they fenced off half the already too small parking lot for all the construction equipment. It didn’t bother me too much because I’m going to the gym…is it really a big deal if I have to walk a few extra steps to get inside? Eventually however, the Y’s push for new members caught up with the limited number of parking spots. For several months now I time going to the gym until after 10 o’clock because any earlier I have to park down the street, on the street. I hate getting my kids out with cars whizzing by me.

Next, they bulldozed the beautiful field with trees for the new building and constructed the first walls – brick. I used to watch people playing with their dogs, or little kid soccer games while working out. Now, I feel like I’m beating my head against a giant brick wall for an hour or so. Because that’s all I can see. Additionally, my Y’s current weight room has no TV. Not just that there isn’t one on each machine – there is not a single television in the entire room. So there aren’t many options to turn my attention to. I got a couple season passes to shows and have been watching those on my iTouch which has worked pretty decently.

When they started building, they had to change the entrance to the child care area. Previously it was down a sidewalk and the door was adjacent to the weight room area. Very convenient. No longer. These days there’s no interior lobby area, just a door in the side of an exterior wall. If there’s a back-up at pick-up/drop-off, you have to stand out in the cold/rain with your munchkins. The did finally put up a blue tarp to keep the wet stuff, but that only works if the rain falls straight down. The other big problem is the bathroom situation. I have a three-year old who was potty training for several months right in the middle of the changes at the Y. I no longer can walk 10 steps to the bathroom outside the old entrance to child care. Now if Maddie has to go just as I drop her off (which always happens despite the fact that she just sat on the toilet at home 2 minutes before we got to the gym), we have to go back outside, down the sidewalk, cut thru the gymnasium,which gets us stared at by about 40 elderly folks in the middle of their yoga class, down another hallway and (finally) into the locker room to the toilets. Then back the same path (more staring and waving at Maddie) to return her to child care. The door that was cut off by the construction was also the main door to the weight room. So after the child care drop off – I get to go the roundabout way to the workout area. Up two flights of stairs, thru the weight room, down two flights of stairs to the locker rooms, dump my gear (which I can’t not bring because it’s for the kids. Diapers etc) and then back up the stairs to start my workout. Aside from the fear of my daughter having an accident because of all the extra travel to the bathroom, I didn’t mind all the additional walking – after all, I’m there to get a workout right? Why would I complain about having take more steps?

— side note: Right here my computer shut down automatically to install Windows updates. I was in a panic for several minutes while my screen went black, then to an “installing” screen and rebooted. Oh goodness, I thought I’d lost my entire blog. Thank GOD for auto save!

Apparently not everyone shares this view of the construction complications. Yesterday, I arrived at the Y to find the front double door half blocked off by a chain link fence. There was a sign on the left door that said “Enter and Scan Your Membership Card”. The sign on the right door said “Exit”. Huh. I followed an old (65ish) man thru the left door and watched as Theresa (who works the front area…we LOVE her) came out, smiled and told the gentleman in front of me “You’ll have to scan your card then go back out the doors and follow the fencing around the back to the weight room”. “What?” he growled back at her. “This is so ridiculous! What’s next? You gonna make us teach our own classes and have them outside?” Still smiling, Theresa responded “We’re making you a beautiful new Y sir, let me show you which way to go to get to the weight room”. He followed her, still grumbling and complaining the whole time. Like it’s her fault the Y is all ripped apart. Furthermore, the people who work at the YMCA have it worse than us. They have to park down the street every day because they don’t want them taking up the limited parking stalls. And, all their offices have been condensed into one t.i.n.y. room. They sit right on top of each other all day long…and have to deal with grumpy people yelling at them for things they can’t do anything about. I’m sure Theresa has to deal with MAJOR frustration from many many individuals all. day. long. every. single. day. Poor thing.

Here’s my plea to you all. When something is irritating in your life, before you complain about it – certainly before you bite someone’s head off about it. Think, can this person actually do anything about it? Or are they as much a victim of this circumstance as I am? Because if they’re in the same boat with you, cut them some slack. Seriously people. A little understanding and kindness is probably exactly what those folks are missing in their lives.

Random association to “the cool lady”. Also yesterday, I got a couple text messages from my Grandma. It was my husband’s birthday and she was responding to my texted invite to come hang out. I think it’s completely awesome that my Grandmother is connected to technology enough to not only receive my text, but also respond in kind. She rocks. Way to go Grandma! I love you.



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