july 24/SWIM

2 loops
lake nokomis open swim
75 degrees
9:30 am

What a wonderful swim! No fogged-up goggles! No doubts about getting off-course — was that partly because the course was off-course? The wind and choppy water shifted the buoys all around. I felt strong and confident and happy. Swimming in this lake is one of my all-time favorite things to do.

10 Things I Noticed

  1. a big plane flying above me, noticing it over my shoulder as I breathed. I looked again and saw it flying between me and the bright sun
  2. vegetation lightly wrapping around my arm, then falling away
  3. a lifeguard’s voice through the bullhorn, giving directions to other lifeguards, after open swim had already started
  4. the flash of the silver boat bottom, a beacon leading me to shore
  5. the middle orange buoy, somehow on the wrong side of the green buoy — never seen it that far off course!
  6. as I rounded the orange buoy it flapped and flopped in the wind
  7. small waves making it harder to do a full stroke
  8. breathed every 5, sometimes 3 then 4 or 5 then 4, once after 6 strokes
  9. when the water was just above my head, near the shore, pushing off the bottom and boucing up to the top
  10. bright, light green is easier for me to see than orange, but still difficult. I could sight the green to orient me, but most of the time, it was just the vaguest suggestion, an idea of green or buoy or the way or on course. I have learned to trust these vague ideas as what’s real or true

Found this passage mentioned on twitter:

Something that keeps me going when I get stuck in my writing is getting the hell out of the house. I take walks, very late at night, around the lake that sits nearby. It’s quiet—just me and all the nocturnal animals, many mosquitoes, and my sweaty beer—and I’ll stroll and listen to the cicadas shriek. It’s good to look around at all that expansive beauty and wonder about the largeness of the planet: I’m such a small thing, just one of many creatures. After being on the Internet all day, or staring at a blank Word document, being out in the Florida evening helps my mind reacclimate. I come back carefully into my own head as I sit on a dock and stare out at the water, rippling wild in the moonlight. In order to work again, I need to be somewhere that reminds me that everything around me is big and beautiful and very much alive. I walk back home, full of the outside world, full of something I hope to bring to the page.

Kristen Arnett

I would like to live in a place where I might be able to see the water rippling in the moonlight regularly, or at least more often than I do now, which is never.