2020 – Happy New Year
Hard to believe it is 2020. Seems like just a blink of an eye ago it was getting ready to change from 1999 to 2000. The worry about impending doom and gloom for computers. Y2K, I believe is what the term was. So long ago but so recent as well. Somehow life as we knew it went rolling right along and as far as I remember, I had not a single Y2K issue. And now it is 20 years past! How did that happen?
The start of a new year seems to be a good time to look back while also looking towards the future. For me personally, 2020 makes me think and reflect on two 40-year anniversaries. Anniversary one is my 40th year in the swimming pool business, having started in 1980 working for a swimming pool company located only a mile or so from where I grew up. At that point in my life, getting to work involved a quick ride on my 10-speed bike after school to work. (OK, the trip to work was quick as it was all downhill. The trip home wasn’t quite as quick!) There I learned to take care of the display swimming pools, stock shelves, and really just learn about working hard and being responsible. All important lessons for a young person whether in 1980 or 2020. Little did I realize when I started that job in 1980 that I would stay in the swimming pool business and make it my career. Its hard to explain, but the swimming pool business just got into my blood and even after college I really didn’t give much thought to leaving it.
40-year anniversary two belongs to Eastgate Pools, founded in 1980 and my home since 1984. Yes, in 1984 the very young and much smaller Eastgate Pools came calling and convinced me to join them and their rapidly growing swimming pool business. It was a tough decision leaving my after-school job of 4-years and coming to a much smaller operation. But what a great decision it ended up being and in those first few years at Eastgate I was given more and more responsibility and learned more and more about pools, spas, wood stoves, and more. Eastgate Pools had a great young core and the growth was amazing. The work was hard, but we had fun. It seemed like in no time at all we were outgrowing our store and warehouse. By now I was married with a family, and I further realized that I had found my life’s work. The year listed on the top of the calendar just seemed to keep changing and now without it even seeming possible, I am celebrating 40-years in the swimming pool industry while working for a company celebrating their 40th year in the swimming pool industry.
And the looking to the future part? Well I figure in another blink of the eyes I will be writing about my 40th anniversary with Eastgate Pools. After all, 2024 is not that far away!
To all those customers that have been part of my 40-years and Eastgate’s 40-years, and to the customers still in my future, a sincere thank you for allowing me to do something that I truly love to do.