I’m just a simple barn owl. I like mice and small birds. I didn’t go to a private owl college. After a busy weekend of flying, swooping and doing that thing where I pace back and forth on a branch, bobbing my head up and down, my bones were tired. I decided I needed some rest and relaxation. I could think of no better place than the hot tub at my local gym, the X-Sport Fitness Center at North Avenue and Wells Street in Chicago, IL 60614.
The first thing I noticed upon trying to enter my local fitness center was simply that I was trying to enter my local gym instead of just entering it. There is no “owl entrance.” Obviously, we’re not expecting our own separate door or anything, but something a little more owl-accommodating would be nice, as the doors are thick and heavy. If we have to be lumped in with other medium sized birds and/or small mammals, so be it. It generally is not convenient to wait for someone to pull or push them open as I wait to either scurry or quickly fly in. But that’s what I have to do; I’m an owl.
The men’s locker room is a typical men’s locker room. It’s fairly spacious with plenty of televisions above the grey, dull locker clusters. There are simple bare benches placed strategically throughout. And lots of men are asking aloud why there’s an owl in here, a fairly typical men’s locker room.
I set the towels in my locker, bunching them up, so I could roost among them later. I took the suggested pre-pool area shower and headed out to the hot tub. Luckily, X-Sport is open 24 hours. This is convenient for me, as I’m a nocturnal creature. Seeing as I’m there in the late hours, generally I have the hot tub to myself, aside from the random couple engaged in a post-workout massaging.
The hot tub at X-Sport is hot tub connoisseur’s dream. It has two brightly lit stories with a tri-stream waterfall on the top level and two run off areas that flow into the bottom pool. There’s a timer on the wall nearby to turn on the jets and get the water bubbling, but in all my visits, I’ve never had to turn it on.
The hot tub late at night is a great place to do some deep thinking and reflecting. Lately I’ve been worried my talons are dulling over a little and my eyesight is going. Maybe I’m getting too many spots on my underside and I missed the right window to settle down. I certainly don’t solve all my problems while soaking a bit, but I’m glad I have a place I can go to think about them and not be bothered by the threat of a possible opossum or a shiny light that I cannot resist investigating.
If you’re looking for a place to relax both your bones and your mind, you can’t go wrong in the hot tub at your local gym, or specifically my local gym, the X-Sport Fitness Center at North Avenue and Wells Street in Chicago, IL 60614. I highly recommend it.
3 out of 4 Hoots.**
-Samson the Owl
**As a barn owl, you probably know that we don’t actually hoot, but since most other owls do, I stuck with a 4 hoot rating system, with the added bonus that if something is really bad, well… I won’t give a hoot.