The plaster in my backyard pool is peeling in great chunks. The deck is cracked. But until we refurbish the outdated pool, my husband keeps it clean and clear. 

My personal pool guy!

Swimming is my favorite form of exercise. I swim slow muscle-stretching laps for forty-five minutes, several days a week.

I vacillate between waking at four in the morning or waiting until dawn. Swimming in the dark or in the morning light are two very different experiences. Moon and stars versus sun and blue sky.

Last month, I chose to start my day at dawn and found I was swimming with the sun and the moon. 

I Googled the phenomenon.  After sifting through sites that contradicted everything I learned in second grade science class—groups that believe the earth is flat and others who think the moon has its own light source—I concentrated on experts in the field. 

This led me to study the orbital geometry of the moon.

I learned new terms: waning gibbous and waning crescent. And new words: heliocentric and geocentric.

Writer’s love new words and phrases! But these were difficult to work into casual conversation.

All this focus on the moon and outer space led me to books about Sally Ride,

The Astronaut Wives Club,

and Hidden Figures— black women mathematicians who helped win the space race.

A great movie, too!

For kids and adults, I recommend Margaret and the Moon.

While I swam, the rising sun and its far-reaching rays appeared to high five the moon as it vanished from view.

That reminded me of my visit to Buckingham Palace and watching the Changing of the Guard. The sentry could not leave until his replacement showed up for duty.

They work together as a team, like the sun and moon.

After learning why the sun and the moon can be seen simultaneously at certain times of the year, I was content to come back to earth, slip into the water, and simply enjoy the view. 

When you look to the sky, what do you see?


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