In the days of my youth, I must have spent half my waking summers either in a pool or lying beside one. I can only hope your childhood was as idyllic. But given the choice between swimming in a swimming pool or a clean pond, I'll take the pond every time. Now the New York Times has an interesting article about the phenomenon of people installing "natural pools" in their backyards. These self-cleaning and largely chemical-free swimming pools have been popular for some time in Europe and only just now are starting to make inroads in America. Modeled after the swimming holes of our rural past, these pools can be lined with vegetation for a nice addition to your backyard landscaping. Personally, I like the "self-cleaning" part best. Links below include a link to the New York Times article and a link to Total Habitat, one of the companies cited that does this kind of work.