Getting Paid to Soak Up the Sun
by Abigail Sims, Staff Writer

This summer I will be returning to my job in beautiful Willoughby, Ohio where I get to bask in the sunshine, scold unruly adolescents, and obtain an excellent tan, all while getting a respectable paycheck with reasonable hours, and the reward of walking away with the feeling that I protected the lives of hundreds of people in just one day. As a lifeguard, I work at the Willoughby Pool during the three short months of summer, working and making as much money as possible in the brief amount of time. However, in order to be qualified enough to get this job, I had to spend an entire week last summer taking grueling lifeguarding and CPR certification classes. Thankfully, I was hired immediately after I finished the classes and worked for the remainder of the summer.
Despite the fact that lifeguarding requires a lot of responsibility and concentration, after all, my job is guarding the lives of others, it truly is a great summer job. The scorching sun may become nearly unbearable at times, the “Pool Rats” (the name given to the irritating young kids who return to the pool day-after-day, causing trouble, just because they have nothing better to do) might make me want to scream, and waking up every morning during summer break might make me want to quit, but for the most part, being a lifeguard is a very enjoyable summer job.
Although it seems as though all a lifeguard does is lounge up in a chair and tan all day, there are many other duties that go along with the job. In addition to being up in chair, I also have to do other unpleasant tasks around the pool. These include taking out the trash, cleaning the bathrooms, putting up or taking down the umbrellas, scrubbing the gutters in the pools, picking up trash, and pretty much doing whatever the manager asks. However, there are numerous ways to sneak out of doing these jobs and there are a large number of times that I find myself sitting around the pool deck, easily avoiding work. Even when there is no way of escaping work, the jobs I have to do can usually be made more pleasant with some assistance and joking around with other lifeguards. In general, being a lifeguard is not too tough of a job. The friends I make are fun to spend the summer with, and I get an excellent tan doing it.