August in Sicily is all about finding ways to stay cool. And with a toddler in tow, that means anything having to do with water. Swimming pools, rocky beach, sandy beach, inflatable wading pools, sprinklers, water toys, baths, showers. You name it, we've been doing it.
Despite feeling a little waterlogged, this form of play has its benefits. For example, I have been discovering many new places--pools at friend's houses, new lidos (beach clubs) on both sandy and rocky beaches that include great swimming pools, organized activities for kids, and playgrounds. The latest is the Lido dei Ciclopi at Acitrezza. A different way to experience our black rocky coast than what I find on the patch of rock in front of our house--carefully constructed wooden platforms that contain private cabinas, large swimming pool (pictured in photo), fish pond and an oasis of palm trees, not to mention bar, restaurant, lounge chairs and umbrellas, and easy direct access to the sea.
Something that I had forgotten from my own childhood memories about spending lots of time with water in the summer is that water play is fun and exhausting at the same time. Time flies. Boredom doesn't exist. And the little guy is sleeping more hours than ever before. We're talking 12 hours at night and 2 to 3 hours in the day. According to Italian tradition, the iodine in salty water is good for the respiratory system but also very exciting for children's metabolisms, causing them to expend a great deal of energy in seaside play. For my fellow mamma friends and I this seems to be true based on the number of hours our kids are sleeping this summer. But I think the heat also has something to do with it. And the fact that 2 year olds don't walk anymore, they run.
And then there is the pure enjoyment of time spent with friends and family outdoors, surrounded by the beauty and wonders of the big blue sea--just look at that color! Don't you want to jump in for a swim?