May 18, 2011

Big Time Lightning

Today I became determined to go swimming. It hasn't been a warm May, and as such the water, though summertime briny at this point, has remained cool. Now, I'm no wimp about cold weather; I have frequented many a cold body of water, including the Pacific and Lake Tahoe. I've spent so much of my life accidentally falling into water (fountains, creeks, ponds, puddles, ditches, you name it I've fallen in it) that I have a pretty good tolerance for unexpected swims. Last year, I very gracefully fell into Milford Haven while trying to board my kayak in the middle of December. Everything you just read reflects extremely poor judgment on my part, though in my defense I think it was the darling dog, Zoe, that sealed that particular icy fate. Her excitement over what she was sure was going to be an unexpected, mid-winter ride in a one person kayak proved too much for my not-so-considerable ability to maintain my balance. Anyway, today I was bitten by a mosquito while trying to clean my car. If mosquitoes don't mean summer, I don't know what does. Swim-suited and bitten, I made my way down the dock. The osprey nesting on the platform some forty feet away shrieked at me, but I paid her no mind. I was going to swim, dammit. I boarded the boat, dangled my feet into the water, bracing myself, and just as I was about to slide into the smelly, murky waters of Barn Creek, the weather announced its intentions. An outrageously loud rumble of thunder almost sent me tumbling into the creek. I looked out across the haven to the mainland, and sure enough, quite without warning, black, dramatic clouds were rolling towards the island. Branches of lightning lit the clouds, and I sighed and ambled back to the house, feet itching with quick-drying salt. I would say summer has arrived.

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