Success! My artist wife didn’t fall in the pool.

The calm, aqua blue water beckoned all week from her workplace: A narrow, pool-deck perch with a small scaffold set up.

The scaffolding made the pool deck much more harrowing. It took up much of the width, leaving the narrowest of walking paths between it and a plunge into the deep, blue water. 

As much faith as I have in my artist wife, Vegas oddsmakers would have closed the book, not allowing any bets. They typically don’t accept bets on a “sure thing.” They don’t like to lose money. 

On this particular December week, every morning she dropped the kids at school, made a quick stop at Starbucks, and went to the sweaty, melt-your-skin-off-hot pool house.

Her friends had recently built an indoor pool on their property in our frozen prairie suburb. It stood stoic amid fluffy, frozen snow tucked gently in the back corner of their large yard. 

As part of their project, her friends budgeted to have a mural painted on the feature wall of their new pool house.

Not only did they budget for a mural, they had long admired my wife’s work. Even more importantly to my wife running her art business, they wished to pay an artist — her — a fair rate for her time and skill. They didn’t presume or expect to receive a friends, family, or we-met-one-time-at-an-event discount. 

The catch? As much as they admired my wife’s work, they didn’t desire something abstract, my wife’s speciality, for their mural. Instead, they wanted something “tropical beachy” — my words, not theirs. 

Nothing screams “Pool!” like some type of beach scene, I suppose. My wife was more than happy to acquiesce.

It’s her business and she went to to work designing an appropriate scene.

Unfortunately, my stellar suggestion of a mural commemorating Cameron’s plunge into the pool in Ferris Bueller’s Day Off was never passed on to her client/friends; nor was my other stellar suggestion of reproducing an iconic Flintstones scene.

Given my creative input, I’m somewhat surprised I didn’t land myself in that pool at some point that week.

“Hey, honey, can you drop by the pool house on Thursday?” I imagined hearing, like bait being hung on the hook. “I could use a hand with the scaffolding in an awkward corner.”

Alas, no such invitation came. And no one took the plunge.

“I never came close to falling,” she later recounted to me, “but the scaffolding almost did.”

“I never came close to falling in,” she later recounted to me, “but the scaffolding almost did.”

I left alone the second half about the scaffolding. It didn’t fall in, so it didn’t matter to me.

However, I remember being mildly disappointed by the first half of her recounting, even if I knew what a plunge into the calm, aqua blue oasis would’ve meant for our family.

As I’m sure you can imagine, a bad day for mom means a very bad day for dad, which means no dessert for the kids (a disastrously bad day).

Nonetheless, with these stories I’m sharing each week, I’ve boiled our lives down into entertaining weekly fables and I can’t simply make up a large detail like “my wife fell into the pool.” 

Alas, we both stayed dry, but my artist wife drew inspiration from her friends, and newest clients. Indeed, she produced a “tropical beachy” mural in a brand new pool house in the dead cold of a Canadian prairie winter.

That, in itself, is quite the plunge, and a testament to my wife’s skill and ability — to adapt her abstract style to create an amazing mural. A skill and ability that I will forever be in awe of.

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