Laura goes with her brother up the long gray staircase with the sun burning their backs to the changing room and she waits for him, she has been waiting forever on the balcony between the changing rooms, the ladies' with the German-accented Swiss attendant and the men's where she worries her brother has gone absent-minded, waiting so she can lead him down the long wooden staircase, down steps to the baby pool and to her own friends showing off their legs to each other and playing at hearts. She does not want them to start without her, but

-- Laura! they cry up to her in chorus, they must have said one-two-three-go, and she holds up one finger, one minute, she tells them from the balcony where she waits.

Has he forgotten what it is he's there for? Will she have to go in herself?

-- The German grammar is very complex, she hears her grandmother say in her old needing-water voice to the Swiss attendant.

Laura has studied the language in school and plans to go there during college.