Saturday, 9 March 2013
An unplanned swim
Our first stop on this glorious morning was a beach which had beautiful turquoise waters
And white shell sand.
We intended to have a leisurely first luncheon at this small piece of paradise. Food and drink was unloaded and carried up to the cropped turf above the beach. The sea was glittering under a blue sky...
And a warm sun. Warm sun! We hadn't felt anything like this since last summer (which had all too few sunny days). The almost complete lack of wind added to the feeling of warmth and we removed our drysuits to enjoy the unaccustomed pleasure of sitting around in base layers in February. Just a few metres from where we basked in the sun, the ground in the shade was still frozen.
So pleasant were the conditions that Jennifer's plan, announced the previous evening, to take a swim suddenly didn't seem so crazy! She changed into her swimming things and ran into the sea, did a rather stylish hand-spring then swam out into the bay. We watched with interest - would she emerge blue and shivering?
Amazingly not! It was warm enough for Jen to sit in the sun and dry off. In Scotland. In February. Well, Douglas and I felt that we had to rise to the challenge. We got ready and charged in, giving ourselves no chance of backing out at the last minute. The air temperature was 16 degrees Celsius, the sea temperature a more February-like 6 degrees Celsius. The stinging shock of the first immersion was electric... We spent seconds rather than minutes in the water but emerged absolutely buzzing and exhilarated to dry off in the warm sun.
Phil and Mike quietly declared the three of us to be barking mad! A skinny-dip in the sea in February in Scotland was a first for all of us - and may probably never happen again - but we felt absolutely and completely alive.