Wednesday, Jun. 23, 2021 @ 12:23 pm
I swim every day. I have memorized the configuration of mussel-crusted rocks off my beach and plan my entry based on a calculation that considers the tide and the height of the swell. There are days where the warm top layer is nearly two meters deep, and only my feet dip down into the biting, cold under layer. Other days, that cold layer is right on the top, and it binds around my chest like a tight vest.
I swim in a small, tepid lake after an afternoon of climbing. The wind hot. Blissful, dry, wind against my body as the sun sets. I get into the hot car still wearing my wet bikini and drive home with the windows down.
I jump off my paddleboard into a cold arm of the inlet. The water black and clear. Dead jellyfish float bloated on the surface, spent from spawning.
I dive into the retro swimming pool at the ranch. A horsefly orbits my head as I tread water in the deep end.
I gather sage, tie the bundle with alfalfa.
I used to dream of living there, on the ranch. I thought that was my destiny, to ride every day through sage on those dusty trails. I wear cowboy boots to dinner, and I love to hear myself clomp along the boardwalks. I love how I feel taller there, even in bare feet.
All I want to do these days is be outside with others. There is nothing better than this. Talking, moving my body, immersing myself in the landscape. I rarely pursue large objectives, instead enjoying the slower pace and the details. I used to put so much emphasis on achievement, because that made me feel better about myself. I don’t care, anymore, about my running pace. About the length of my hike. Instead, I care about the conversations, my enjoyment of the experience, about the quality of my connection with others.
There is such freedom in all of this. So much peace.