It was an icy cold morning, in and out of the water. Sheila and I met up with Edy, Catherine, and Colleen for a 7am swim down at the Albany Bulb.
We arrived in time to catch the last of the pinks in the clouds and to watch the sunrise when we were in the water.
At 51 degrees, the water felt especially cold. Sheila and I were determined to get a good swim in and she quickly stuck her head in and front-crawled away. We’d seen the seal as we were heading into the water and I didn’t want to be alone, so I bit the bullet and swam after her. It was cold enough that it took a while before my breath was steady and my stroke strong, but soon I was comfortable and glowing with that inner warmth.
At one point we stopped to check in and saw that the seal was right behind us. Butty, as Colleen and Marcia named him because he is always popping his butt up out of the water, was watching us curiously. I tried to take a picture, but Butty slipped back under by the time I had my phone ready. Again, I’m struck by my newfound calm in the face of the seal. I didn’t even have to fight the urge to irrationally swim away. Of course, I had brave Sheila there to protect me; not sure how it would’ve gone if I was alone.
We swam out some more and then back, nearly a half hour in all. It was a good cold swim, the kind that leave me invigorated all day long.