Natatorium is a Latin word simply translated as swimming pool.
The Canales is one of the most dangerous public housings project in Puerto Rico. A freeway runs behind the projects where a bridge is under construction. The construction and rain have created a dirty pond that a group of Canales’s boys call, “La Poza.” On hot afternoons, the children swim in the pond.
The water is dark and contaminated with cement residues, machine oils, trash and material from the bridge’s construction. For boys of scarce resources, La Poza is their biggest source entertainment. It was their olympic pool.
Frolicking in the water they could forget the social divisions that divide San Juan. However, the fun did not last long. The public authorities and the bridge’s developers continually removed the boys from La Poza. After a period of time, the authorities finally shut off access to the Natatorium Knales because of the dangerous conditions.
The government has since invited the children to swim in a natatorium in the city.