Today (26 April) was the first day to combine mid 60s F temps, bright sunshine, moderate wind, and time to play hooky from the office for a morning, in quite some time. Not having a lot of time, I headed out the back door and over to my local swimming hole in the Blue Hills reservation near my home, south of Boston. Of course others had the same idea and were on the trail as expected. I encountered several equestrian riders and a couple of hikers still dressed as for February, as I jogged along the single track under the embracing warmth of the sun, clad only in my loincloth aka running kilt. When I arrived at the AMC camp, I found no one down by the water, so I quietly dropped the running kilt and slipped into the water, which was invigorating and a bit colder than it would have been at this time during a normal spring. Since our spring is taking its sweet time to arrive this year, I found this particular swim to be all the more enjoyable, my first skinny dip of the season, my first time naked in New England waters since last November, and certainly not as brisk as those final skinny dips of last autumn. Reminding me that spring is near, if not yet here, were the many species of arriving birds to be heard high up in the trees, though not visible to me from my vantage point offshore. My only companion in sight was a solitary fisherman in a kayak a hundred yards across the water in the adjoining cove. He took little notice of my presence.
Most notable and welcome at this time of year is the lack of bugs, which makes these early season outings most special to me. Also it occurred to me as I glided along that the weeds to which I am accustomed to be grasping at my loins and other dangling parts as I swim here later during the summer are still many weeks away at this time of the year. Most pleasant but curiously unsettling in their absence. Today, the pond's surface was perfectly calm at this end by the camp, it being sheltered from the easterly breezes of the morning. Thus the sun was doing it's best to warm the upper layer of the water to which I confined my nude activity this day. The water was as smooth as glass, and so I found my soul to be similarly settled during this brief “found moment” in my busy life. -Dan