lake swimming

June 24, 2022

The first time I swam in a lake was in the late 80s at Kingsley Pines summer camp in Maine. I was used to seawater, so the lake –– smooth, cold and gunmetal grey –– was such a novelty. I imagined all kinds of lake monsters lurking beneath the water. Not being able to see down to the bottom was unnerving. I’d watched Stand By Me, so I was leery of leeches. Saltwater will always be my favourite water to swim in. But there’s something about lake water that is a majesty unto itself. This week, I swam laps across a small motor-free lake in Hunstville remembering my first lake swims at camp. In the morning, the lake water was almost obsidian in colour, choppy, and so cold you have no choice but to move your body rigorously. By dusk, it was Wedgewood blue and smooth as glass. What a thrill to swim in a lake like this. Snapping turtles, leeches, and all.

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