My plan for today was to go to the Parliament Hill Lido, but the Ladies’ Pond was so magical yesterday that I opted for another swim there instead. Hazel, Eliza, Kevin, and I made the journey to Hampstead and I left them on the high street to browse while I beelined over to the pond. I figured I had the Heath memorized after Kevin and I spent so long lost in it yesterday, but it turned out there were still more ways for me to get lost. I wandered down muddy paths with increasing frenzy as I couldn’t remember when the pond closed and was worried I would miss it altogether.
Finally, I found it and all my hectic energy leaked away as I entered the peaceful sanctuary of the pond. A misty rain was falling and everything was quiet. The few other swimmers there were each alone, slipping into and out of the water without a word.
The water was 3 degrees again today and because I’d found that temperature so easy yesterday, I decided to try without my gloves (I really don’t like the feeling of swimming with gloves on). That turned out to be a mistake. The cold sent sharp knives through my hands that were distractingly painful. I breathed through it and thought about how, in the natural childbirth class Kevin and I took before we had Eliza, the teacher had us hold an ice cube for as long as possible to simulate the pain of childbirth. Sometimes cold is painful.
I ended up getting out sooner than I really wanted to because of my poor hands, but it was still long enough to fill me with a sense of vital well-being.