Tag Archives: pool

Garmin’s New ‘Swim 2’ For Pool & Open Water Swimmers — I Am Skeptical. (Sorry.)

by Anura Guruge

Click to ENLARGE. From ‘garmin.com’, of course.

It BETTER be better than the Fenix 5
in Open Water
BUT it doesn’t have a gyroscope. 

Click to access my post from last year. Actually I did a couple of posts on this topic.

This Garmin amused I. I do NOT consider myself a swimmer. Given that I do live in a lake community, with beach rights, I do swim ‘open water‘ in the Summer — but, I do live in New Hampshire, and this year, Summer was about 3-weeks long. (SMILE). If I am travelling, and staying at a hotel with a pool, I will swim, religiously — but I do not go swimming, in pools, other than when I am staying at a hotel (which is ~ 20 — 25 days a year).

That this ‘baby’ doesn’t have a gyroscope cracks me up.

GPS does NOT work underwater. That is why you need a gyroscope. The gyroscope is supposed to backfill data IN BETWEEN GPS reading. With the Fenix 5, with a gyroscope, this was still the challenge. The Fenix 5 did not keep up between GPS readings.

I HOPE Garmin has fixed all of the ‘open water’ issues in this — the ‘Swim 2’. As a huge Garmin fan (as well as a Garmin shareholder) I always want Garmin to WIN. Thus, though I am skeptical I am rooting for this watch to be a winner.

I did a bit of research. It, at its core, is a Garmin Forerunner 45 — with the special software adding $50 to the price. Interesting choice. It would appear that what Gramin was most concerned about was the $250 price point.

Well, I will keep an eye on this as I do with most Garmin watches. I will check the Forums.

No I am not going to get one. As I started off, I am not a swimmer.

I will be happy to share any feedback or updates you share with me. Thank you.

Related Posts:
Search ‘Garmin‘.

by Anura Guruge

“Mohegan Sun” — Staying At The New “Earth Tower”.

by Anura Guruge

Click pictures to ENLARGE.

Attribution WILL be enforced.

The ‘Earth Tower’ at ‘Mohegan Sun’ (CT) is new. It was completed in November 2016. It is the second tower at Mohegan and considerably shorter and stouter than the sweeping and elegant ‘Sky Tower’. I think they can extend it upwards in the future if they see a need.

We stayed in a Double Queen room, in the ‘Earth Tower’, for 4-nights after Christmas, December 28, 2016 to January 1, 2017. When making the reservation (eventually by phone after checking it out online) I purposefully chose the ‘Earth Tower’ because it was new. I don’t think I was given an option as to ‘view’. The room assigned to us, after waiting in line for 20 minutes, was on the 3rd floor sans a river-view. If we go there again I will make sure to specify that I want a room with river-view. Also a higher floor — just for a more expansive view.

But, it was NOT bad at all. Definitely an unmistakable air of freshness, light and modernity.

The Good Things:

1.  The room was a decent size, maybe a tad bigger than average for a double queen.

2.  Good lighting, lots of light … very fresh and welcoming.

3.  Well appointed, very well lit bathroom.

4.  Tons of built in USB ports for charging devices. YES. YES. YES.

5.  ‘Earth Tower’ is much closer to the self-parking ‘Winter Garage’ than the ‘Sky Tower’ — and that was good because we used the car every day.

6.  Electronic ‘Do Not’ disturb sign.

7.  Coffee maker and fridge.

8.  Built-in (though we didn’t have a need for one and Teischan used it to keep her snacks).

9.  Good water pressure on the shower.

10.  Easy enough to get to the restaurant and shops using the ‘Winter Garage’ entrance.

[11.  They sent us a FREE chocolate cake the first night. That was a bonus!]

Not So Good Things:

1.  No exhaust fan in the bathroom (and why this is so in hotels is an eternal mystery to me even after 60 years of staying in hotels).

2.  No drawers — just shelves.

3.  Bathroom cabinetry doesn’t extend all the way to the walls — so stuff falls off on the (dirty) floor.

4.  Still the usual coffee condiment packets that result in either the sweetener or the sugar sachets from getting needlessly thrown away.

5.  The pool at the ‘Earth Tower’ is a joke (as I spelled out in this post).

6.  Inexplicably, only one call button for the 4 elevators — when there should be one on each wall as is the case at the ‘Sky Tower’.

Related Posts:
++++ Search ‘Mohegan& ‘Foxwoods’ for other posts >>>>

by Anura Guruge

‘Free The Male Speedo’ — Equal Opportunity For Men!

Anura Guruge December 2014 thumbnail


by Anura Guruge

speedo-guard-hipster-bottomRelated posts:
Aug. 23, Hampton Beach — Pictures.
** IF
“Free the Nipple”, NH backfires …
** “Free the Nipple”, NH on Tumblr. 

++++ SEARCH ‘topless’ or ‘nipple’ for many, many other posts  >>>>

speedo1On Monday of this week we were staying at the “Wonder View Inn” in Bar Harbor, Maine; our room was right above the outdoor pool. While brushing my teeth I could hear, what sounded like a family, with a dog, frolicking about in the pool area — though the bathroom blind was pulled down. Then I hear Teischan (9) exclaim from the bedroom “there is a man swimming in his underwear”. I didn’t have to look. I knew exactly what she was commenting about. The man must have been wearing a ‘speedo’. That a man wearing a speedo would elicit a comment from MY daughter perturbed me — slightly. It is true she had never seen me at a pool or on a beach in a ‘speedo’ — though as an European ‘speedos’ were my de rigueur bathing suit UNTIL the Summer of 1987 — 28 years ago.

So what is the deal here?

Thinking about it made me realize that the issue is no different to the “Free the Female Nipple” conundrum. I did a quick Google. Appears that when it comes to laws you are in the same court as that for female toplessnes. Most places do NOT have any laws specifically banning speedos — in much the same way that at least 48 of the States do not have any explicit laws about female toplessness. Yes, you can find a few reports that men have been cited for wearing speedos — usually under the all encompassing ‘disturbing the peace’ law.

Indecency laws only require the genitals to be covered and a speedo does that.

Furthermore, as was the case in Bar Harbor, foreigners wearing speedos, as far as I know, are never told off or cited. And from 1985 to 1987 I wore speedos in the U.S., albeit mainly around hotel swimming pools or beaches in Tampa and Oahu, without ever having anybody say anything about it.

Then we have swim/dive teams and competitions. All the men, including those from the U.S., wear speedos. So IF there is a swim meet taking place in a U.S. pool the men will wear speedos but speedos are not deemed acceptable for recreation. What gives?

And now the supreme irony. Women can wear the skimpiest bikinis and that is acceptable while men can’t wear speedos.

Why the double standard?

In Europe female toplnessness and men in speedos (quite literally) go hand-in-hand.

Yes, it does have to do with a stubborn streak of puritanicalness that still permeates U.S. society. It is all about decency and modesty. I understand and as I said this is an issue that I confronted, personally, 28 years ago.

It must have been May or July 1987. I, newly married, went to a family cookout in Massachusetts. They had a pool and I wore a speedo — since that was all I had. My (then) wife didn’t say anything and she had seen me in speedos. Nobody said anything to me about my speedo all day. They used to kind of like me those days. I wore the speedo, with nothing else, as was my then wont, most of the day. I was ultrafit those days — fasting 3 times a week, running 7.5 miles most days and doing 100 sit-ups and 100 push-up a day. So I didn’t have anything really to hide or cover up. But on the way home I was informed that wearing speedos was not the ‘American way’ and that I needed to get some ‘proper’ U.S. swim trunks. I never gave it much thought — 28 years ago. But now it has got me thinking. Ironically I am the same weight now as I was 28 years ago. But I am now 62 and though I still run my total exercise regime is 1/8 of what it used to be.

As with female toplessness I believe that there should be certain, self-imposed standards, as to whether one should wear a speedo or not. I think the 25 BMI mark should be a good demarcation point. I still make the 25 BMI but I am not sure whether I should subject innocent folks to even more of my body than they are now subjected to given that I am, during the Summer, habitually topless — and, at a minimum, do my 40 – 45 minute run, 6 days a week, topless.

But something for all U.S. men to think about.

What is the deal with wearing speedos? In the same way that we want to free the female nipple we should also strive to free the male speedo. They really do go hand-in-hand.


“Wonder View Inn”, Bar Harbor (Acadia), Maine: Hard To Beat For Value, Service & Upbeat Atmosphere.

Anura Guruge December 2014 thumbnail.

by Anura Guruge

Related Posts:
>>  Cromwell Harbor Motel
>> “Acadia View” bed & breakfast
>> “Seal Harbor” — Martha Stewart …

Refer to ‘Acadia’ master index page at TOP ↑ ↑

Click to ENLARGE.

Copyright might be enforced.

We spotted this deer, right outside our room, the first evening we were there. That was an unexpected bonus.

The “Wonder View Inn”, at 50 Eden Street, Bar Harbor, Maine, minutes from the Acadia National Park eastside Route 3 & 233 entrances will most likely, in the foreseeable future, be our base whenever we go to ‘The Park‘ — we already having made a reservation for later in the summer within 30 minutes of getting there last Saturday, June 27, 2015.

When you factor it all in, and some of the synergies that ensue, the “Wonder View Inn” is hard to beat in terms of value for money, location, views, SERVICE and overall ‘you are here to have fun‘, holiday camp atmosphere.

Yes, I am kind of sure we lucked out (but I can sure do with some luck these days). Last June I didn’t have much trouble getting a reservation in Bar Harbor, at the Cromwell Harbor Motel, for late June. So I had been lulled into a sense of complacency. This year I waited until a month ahead of our departure date to start calling. The difference between last year and this year was that last year we went mid-week. Ah! That, of course, makes all the difference when you are talking about the last weekend of June. The the ‘suite’ at the Cromwell we wanted (i.e., the one we stayed in last year) was booked. So I started dialing around. Teischan over the last 2 years has become very fussy as to where and how she will sleep when we travel. She has to have her own ‘big’ bed. She refuses to share with Devanee. So we have to find rooms that have (at least) a queen (ideally a king), another bed plus a third sleeping surface for Devanee — though to her credit she is not fussy and will sleep on a couch even if it is not a pull-out bed.

I called the “Wonder View Inn” mid-afternoon on May 26. I happened to get ‘Nate’, the HR Manager for both the “Wonder View” and the very fancy “Bluenose Inn” next door, since nobody else was picking up the calls. He was great. He understood exactly what I needed and said he had the perfect room for us — the “BIG room, with two brand new King beds and a couch, with a view — under the office”. We discovered that this room is “B3”. We got it for $99 a day (plus taxes). That was one heck of a great rate.

And it just got better and better.

>> Room was indeed huge. Plenty of space to stretch out.
>> Two new HUGE King beds which were super comfortable.
>> HUGE flat panel TV, the biggest I have ever seen in a hotel room.
>> Microwave, coffeemaker, fridge, iron and ironing board.
>> Deer outside the window.
>> View of Frenchman Bay across the trees.
>> Good coffee, hot water, orange juice and cranberry juice, in the lobby, all day & (I think) all night.
>> Decent, FREE, continental breakfast with boiled eggs and breakfast sandwiches.
>> Access (at least when we were there because their pool was not fully operational) to the ‘fancy’ HEATED pool at the adjoining “Bluenose Inn” — which is owned by the same family. Teischan and I used the pool and the very hot jacuzzi, with relish and delight, on two evenings, before dinner. Perfect way to get ready for a meal out.
>> Access to the bar and lounges at the “Bluenose Inn” (though we never got a chance to avail ourselves to this).
>> Beautiful views from the lobby area where you get breakfast and beverages. Well tended lawns.
>> Wonderfully friendly and helpful staff. WOW. Bravo. What a great bunch. Everybody is upbeat, huge smile on their faces and happy to help. It was a delight. Somebody, most likely I, left some lights on in the Jaguar XJ8. So we needed a jump start Monday morning. No problemo. “Brian” and one of the maids came rushing to our assistance. I was so impressed.


Yes, it is old and shows its age. Yes, of course, it could do with some major refurbishing and some heavy-duty cleaning. Teischan liked the room so much that she did NOT subject it to her Anthony Melchiorri, as in “Hotel Impossible”, test — as she did at the Wyndham in Philadelphia (to their chagrin). Yes, the housekeeping could be better! When housekeeping does not empty the coffeemaker filter and rinse out the coffee it always makes me cringe — but in this case I cut them slack. If you need to stay in an immaculate 3-star (or greater) hotel this is NOT for you. Try the “Bluenose Inn” next door — roughly $100+ more a night.

We are going back. We liked it. Hope you do too.

UNH Marine Program: Know The Coast Day — We Went. It Was Good. It Was Fun. It Was Educational Too.

Anura Guruge, laughing, picture November 16, 2011.

by Anura Guruge

Click the picture to ENLARGE them to full size.

Deanna found this through the Homeschooling Alliance that we belong to. It was free and looked quite promising. Yes, I was amused that UNH was holding a ‘Know The Coast Day‘ in landlocked Durham, NH (when I know that UNH does have research facilities on the coast). That said, they did all of us proud. I like UNH Durham. There is always a nice vibe in Durham. We have been to numerous events and camps at UNH Durham, some to do with Destination Imagination (DI).

It was a gray day, though the rain held off and it was pleasantly warm. Parking is always an issue at Durham, but I managed (after I flashed my smile a few times).

It seemed to be well thought out, coordinated and laid out. Lots of volunteer, many retired folks like me. Some representatives from the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard. Very helpful, in particular Mr. Rick Cecchetti. Gave me a ton of information pertinent to Devanee. Altogether a very nice. Very helpful.

The squid dissecting was a hit. I learnt a lot. Did you know that they now have a separation device attached to U.S. trawler nets to help whales escape IF they get entangled in the nets? I liked that.

I was impressed with this SeaPerch, DIY remotely operated vehicle (ROV). Appears I can get the parts for about $50. I can build kits, so putting it together shouldn’t be too hard. I can see an ROV in our future.

I was struck by the level of detail in this model.


They had two large tanks, this the smaller, by quite a bit, was for wave and tidal studies. Very neat.