Thursday, July 2, 2009

Towards-Full Moon Swim

It’s true--I’m part fish. I absolutely love being in the water--ocean, lake, pool--It doesn’t matter--I’m at home. When I moved into the place I’m renting now, the sealer on the deal for m was when my landlady said, “And there’s a pool.” My eyes must have brightened up because she then said, “Do you want to see?” She took me around to the pool area, and I fell in love. I was ready to sign on the doted line--yes, a pool!
I swam when it would have been prudent not to--when the temperature of the water got below 60 degrees I still attempted a quick dip. But being fish not polar bear, I had to quit come the end of October. The winter months were long and dark. I would sometimes just go to the fence and stare longingly at the water. As soon as the weather warmed up--not the water, necessarily, but the air--I was back in the water--the brisk 60 degrees seems to be my starting point. Yes, it was cold. Yes, my landlady thought I was nuts. Yes, I was happy.
Since I came back from Hawaii, I’ve been out there several times a day, beginning with my morning wake-up swim, long afternoons “pooling” and now the after-dark au natural dip before bed.
Tonight the coyotes were singing in the foothills, sending their songs to the almost full moon. Yips came from the young ones, longer choruses from the adults. A bat flew out of one of the eucalyptus tree, dipping quickly toward me and then swooping up again. Over in the field beyond the fence I heard an owl hoot. Then everything got very quiet. I slipped off my towel and stepped down into the water slowly so as to barely make a ripple on the water. Back and forth I paddled: breaststroking in one direction, a doing a modified elementary backstroke on the way back. If I take my time--for there is no hurry--I swim making no sound whatsoever. I am as silent as the stars, as the moon. The Big Dipper was off to my right above the pool house, the Pole Star directly over my head. As I swam back and forth, the rising moon was peeking out at me, playing a game of peek-a-boo behind the cypress trees. The stars lit up one by one. I swam until I saw a shooting star dash across the eastern sky. The air was so still I could have sworn I heard it.

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