Originally Posted January 7, 2011
I had to wake up early the other morning to get into the city for my doctors’ appointments and it was a cold winter’s morning here in upstate New York. As went into the bathroom the air was cold and I turned on the shower, which quickly heated up and warmed the air around me as I stepped in, and I remembered when I was a boy growing up in the Caribbean, we didn’t have hot water. We just had cold water. Houses didn’t have hot water. We all had showers with an electric heating element that instantly heated the water. When the heating element burned out, even though we were in the Caribbean, mornings were cool and that water was cold! You didn’t know the element was burned out until you were in the shower and cold water hit your just awake body.
Things back then were so simple. We had one TV station that came on at 9am and signed off at 12:30 PM, Came back on at 4PM and signed off again at 11:00PM. There were not many kid shows, so we had to use our imaginations and go outside and actually play. We didn’t make play dates. You just went over to your friend’s house, shouted his name, and you both rode off on your bikes, bare foot and bare back for a day of fun. You went back home when you were hungry for lunch or dinner and your parents didn’t have to put out an amber alert for you. Life was so uncomplicated back then.
Doctors suspect that I may have had sarcoidosis since childhood. I think they could be right. I was never a sickly child, but I was not a very healthy child. I always had “something” wrong and my doctor never could figure out what was wrong, other than to say I had bronchitis and recommended I go take a swim in the ocean.
Now I wish I had access to the ocean as I did in my childhood. A swim in the ocean for anyone with lung issues is a remarkable thing. You feel so much better afterwards. A combination of the warm salt air and that warm salt water surrounding your body is better therapy that anything any scientist can develop today.
Standing there in that warm shower the other morning for a moment brought all those childhood memories back in a flash and I so appreciated the simpler life. Nothing compares to a swim in the warm Atlantic Ocean on a warm day in December. Back then, when I had it right there, I didn’t appreciate it. Now I long for it.