Saturday, January 10, 2009

Getting back in the water

Something about this swim around bainbridge is doing some real work on me. I’ve done a lot in and around the ocean, but nothing has made such a strong impression.

Consider late December...I couldn’t have been further away, standing in a blizzard in the Montana mountains. Yet the looking glass of Bainbridge ocean still seemed to be there, right in front of me.

All it took was one deep breath, a quick duck of my head, and I’m through, I’m underwater. I can go back at will. My ocean world is living inside of me now, and it's always at hand.

I haven’t had a swim in more than 2 weeks, and my schedule will keep me away even longer. I'm just back from a few days working in Texas.

I have a strong urge to get back underwater, I NEED to spend some time with the Wing Point sandbar. I’d like to see it on a glassy calm day. But I may have to go with some wind, since I can't wait any longer.

It's sooooo nice to have this reservoir of satisfaction I can tap at will. One look at the Bainbridge ocean where I’ve passed through—even just looking at a picture—and I find myself drifting down into the underwater world.

What do I find when I enjoy one of these dreamy dips? It’s not specific images, it's more of a soft ocean pulse, a sensation of being a part of the watery world, apart from the human world above.

Once upon a time I lived in a cabin in the Umpqua woods, southwest Oregon. I spent hours upon hours in the forest and alongside rivers and streams. I got to know where the elk hung out, and had a too-close encounter with a large bull that declared his territory. I found a skull with a large and fantastic uneven rack (antlers) that still lives in my garden. I drifted downstream through hallowed pools and tiny tributary streams, looking at the fabulous North Umpqua summer steelhead, large and small. I watched a bear rumble through my yard. I got a feeling of connection that remains to this day. But it was never as strong as this ocean surge.

I adore this through-the-looking-glass world I’ve found. It’s not all beauty and it’s not all drama, but it's magnificent because it has the power to take me outside myself.

I live surrounded by water.


Tracy Rouleau said...

We all live surrounded by water. If more of us could understand the magnificence that surrounds us, maybe then we'd give ocean protection the priority it deserves. Looking forward to more posts...

Tracy Rouleau said...

Oh I almost forgot, Happy Belated Birthday!