The Kardashians have been known to summer in the Hamptons. The Kennedys have Hyannis Port. And the Sheeheys, no stranger to family traditions, had lifeguarding gigs at Padonia Park Club for over a decade.
Padonia was a pool that was close to our house, making it the perfect summer job. And so my oldest sister, Riley, worked there for seven summers, while my other siblings and I worked there for four each. We taught swim lessons and lifeguarded, and some of us were camp counselors, but a few confused texts in the family group chat would show that nobody can quite remember who did what.
If you add up all our years at Padonia, you get 19. Yes. If our summers at Padonia were a person, that person could vote in the 2020 election.
You can call this trend what you want, but I will be referring to it, of course, as the Last Great American Dynasty. And as with any dynasty, I could feel that I was living history at Padonia. I distinctly remember seeing a broken, painted chair in the back of the first-aid shed and asking the head lifeguard, “What’s that?”
“Well,” he said, “your sister painted it, and your brother broke it.”