After the worst December and early January in my memory with our weather (not to mention Mum’s accident!), we have finally hit pay-dirt. Yesterday was lovely but the water was very cool for swimming as we’ve not had many sunny days. I emerged with skin burning and bones aching.
But with just one day of sunshine, followed by another, the water warmed enough for me to dive straight in today with no icecream headaches. I could lie like a star (in the northern hemisphere you might call it the snow angel position), I could swim along the ocean floor, swim freestyle along the beach and backstroke back, all without feeling as if I was going to collapse with hypothermia. It felt like cool silk on the skin, sliding over the flesh – a wonderful feeling.
Today was a mellow 23 degrees Celsius and so we took the opportunity to have our first pootle in the boat since March 2013.
We left the little Triabunna Marina and headed south with a plan to turn past Black Point and to hunker down sheltered from the northeasterly in Okehampton. The sound of the motor – a very quiet rumble, the water rushing past the hull – a sound I store in the memory banks for the winter months. But it was a bit too windy and so we headed into the south facing shore of Louisville. With the anchor down, OH did boaty things and I kayaked and saw my first ever flying-fish – a quaint thing, like a bird bursting from the water, fins outspread – strange!
All in all, it was the kind of day for which one waits all year. I revel in boats. I love the sound of all sorts of marine craft but chiefly the sound of water against the hull, a slopping sound when at anchor, knocking – as if sea spirits are tapping against the underside of the boat, sending messages. And I love the hiss of spray as it creams along the port and starboard sides. The blue of the skies, the echoed colour of the seas. The chance to see dolphins, sea eagles, fairy penguins – even flying-fish. And I love the after-burn – the tight feeling one’s skin gets as one steps ashore, the salt sea tiredness and the idea that ‘yes please, let’s do it all again tomorrow!’
All in all, a day in which one can put up one’s feet, relax and finally take things easy.