I want to tell you about a difficult place that I visit regularly since moving to my suburb in the inner fringes of a large Australian city. The place is a gym, and I like it in the winter because there is a steam room there, a good place to zone out and think about the day. In the summer, the place is best known for its appended outdoor pool.

The gym sits above the pool in a pale alien sphere and, occasionally, at the pool, you see a sunglassed person peer up and say searchingly: “Oh! There’s a gym up there.”

The pool itself is famous. It’s been immortalised in films, in rare things – famous novels – and even rarer things, famous newspaper articles from the 1980s that are still sometimes photocopied and taught in university classes today. Recently, I saw footage of this iconic pool in the museums of two different capital cities, in two separate art exhibitions, exhibiting simultaneously. We love our pools, and this one especially.

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Vijay Nanda

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