Chilly Challenge

This time, the adventure belonged to another. I was but an observer standing silently to the side, impressed but uninspired to follow.

Walking in Wellfleet, Massachusetts on pristinely beautiful Cape Cod one October, I happened upon one of the area’s many kettle ponds. These freshwater basins —Thoreau’s Walden Pond is one of the better known examples— are virtually self-contained ecosystems dependent upon precipitation for their continued existence. Formed by melted glacial ice, they receive no waterflow from a river or stream. Their clear fresh raindrop waters sparkle blue within settings of verdant evergreen forests. Striking. Captivating. Inviting.

But still…  the air temperature was struggling toward 60 degrees Fahrenheit. I was bundled and zipped into a winter coat. And as I admired the vivid crisp color of this particular pond, I saw a splash. I watched for the fish to leap again. Instead I spotted the steady stroke of a swimmer making his/her way through frigid waters. No wet suit. Warmed only by the standard insulation with which our bodies are equipped.

As one with an aversion to cold water -who always does the toe dip temperature test before diving into a lake or pool, I was awed by the swimmer’s fortitude. I watched as he/she reached shore’s edge and then began the long swim back. Methodical. Unwavering. Uncomfortably chilled by my few stationary minutes spent watching, I pulled my zipper just a little higher to my neck and finally turned away. Walking briskly across pine needles to warm myself again…

Cape Cod Things To Do on raveable

5 Comments to Chilly Challenge

  1. rainfield

    I just cannot feel the chilly challenge when looking at your pictures.

    The view and color are so nice and beautiful.

  2. Rainfield: The vivid contrasting colors were stunning, but I could no have imagined submerging myself in that frigid water! That swimmer was an impressive athlete!

  3. Trisha

    What a beautiful place! I had no idea Cape Cod looks like that. And I’d be right with you in zipping up my jacket, not at all tempted by the chilly water. Brrrr!

  4. Yes, Trisha. Absolutely beautiful(!) but ill-placed, geographically speaking, for warm water swimmers like me (and you)!

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