Hot tubs are one of those things you never thought you needed but eventually realize you can’t live without. When we moved into our new place three years ago, it had a ten-year-old hot tub that needed lots of work. We poured a lot of money into it and kept it going all this time. But a few weeks ago, we bought a new hot tub that’s smaller, is more energy efficient and looks better. The only problem was that the old one was too big to take out through the yard. So the company and we had to split the cost of a crane to pull the old one out and lower the new one in (pic left). It was a sight to behold as these 1,000-pound-plus bathtubs sailed high above our house. All the time I envisioned one of them breaking loose and smashing through the roof like a Roadrunner cartoon. Fortunately, that didn’t happen.
Unfortunately, when they lowered the new one in, it didn’t fit. It was about six inches too wide. The guys brought out a saws-all and hammer and clipped off enough slate and concrete to squeeze the new one in. The question now is will it ever come out? Hot tubs generally last around 10-15 years. If all goes according to my plan, this one will have to make 50.
Hot tubs are everywhere these days but they’re particularly popular here in the west where there’s lots of cold weather and snow, the nights are cool even in the summer, and you engage in enough outdoor recreation that you feel like you really could use a good soak regularly. As I get older and carry a lot more stuff around the country for work, through airports, factories, trade shows and other seemingly endless venues, the hot tub looms in my mind as a sanctuary: something to look forward to when I get off that plane after being squeezed into a seat for four hours. It’s like a great big beer.
Making the experience even more wonderful is that our hot tub runs on solar power from our 2kWh array and overlooks the Salt Lake Valley, the skyline and city lights twinkling like stars as we simmer our troubles away. There aren’t a lot of things that approach perfection in my opinion. But this is about as close as it gets.