Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Dolphin Swim


No, I don't mean the kick you learn how to do to accelerate off the wall in the pool. I mean actual dolphins.

Monday, I meant to wake up early to do the annual "Polar Bear Swim" at La Jolla Shores. When my alarm went off, however, I was not ready to get up. I was too exhausted. I'm not sure why; I hadn't even gone out the night before but I definitely wanted sleep. So by the time I got up, it was too late for the group swim. Despite the fact that Jason was gone, I decided to go it alone. I needed to swim, all the pools were closed, and I was in the mood. So I got my gear ready, took a deep breath, and headed toward the shores to brave the 58 degree water.

It was a bit windy so there was a little more surf than I expected but nothing bad. I was surprised how quickly I acclimated to the water. I didn't feel that cold to me. Those weeks of getting in the ocean must be paying off. After warming up, I settle into a nice rhythm. I felt actually kind of speedy, thanks to the wetsuit. I kept having to swim farther out because the tide was low and the waves were breaking pretty far out. I still was only in 8-10 feet deep water when I heard this strange whistling and clacking. Disoriented, I stopped and looked around to see who it was. All of a sudden, this gray fin swims past me. Then, I could clearly see gray, shimmery bodies, eyes, and faces, belonging to a pod of about 8 bottle-nose dolphins! I couldn't believe how close they were to me! I couldn't reach out and touch them but they were only a few meters away. Incredible. They seemed to be showing off and in very good spirits. They wished me a Happy New Year, and I wished them the same. They arced between me and the shore before cutting out to sea again. I had felt so alone before their appearance, and I realized I wasn't alone at all. Talk about noticing the magic in my life! It doesn't take much noticing to notice that! It was an absolutely fabulous experience. I can't wait to get in again! (Only thing is, I swam over some kelp beds and I guess something scratched my neck so it looks like I have a great big ole' hicky on my neck this morning. Gotta watch out for that seaweed!)

12 comments:

Matt said...

That's pretty cool. My first reaction would have been "SHARKS!!!" Hope you see the dolphins again soon.

Paul said...

Dolphins are the best. It's amazing how they move around you in the water.

Habeela said...

Happy New Year!

jameson said...

Good job on getting in the solo open water swim. It would have been much easier to blow it off. I need to get in the ocean... I have done an open water swim in months.

bunnygirl said...

Oh, how wonderful! I've heard of places where you can go on purpose to swim with the dolphins and I've always wanted to do something like that.

Lucky you!

JeffM said...

That's really cool! People pay money for an experience like you had.

Bolder said...

wow!

i can't even imagine what an incredible experience that must have been!!

Tammy said...

Wow!!!!!!!!!! How damn cool is that?? You know me, I'm with Matt... I would have had a heart attack before I realized they were dolphins.

The friend in me must say this: DO NOT GO SWIMMING IN THE OCEAN ALONE AGAIN! Remember how easily we got off course when I was there! Be safe.

Lana said...

WOW!!! How amazing?! Moments like those are just too cool.

Jodi said...

Wow! What an amazing way to start the year. I think it's good luck!

My crew braved Lake Erie's 46 degrees in our skivvies (no wetsuits) for a brisk 200 meter dash. I'm so jealous that you could swim!

Jodi

qcmier said...

You swam with Dolphins. I trudged through muck. Hmmm...

Triteacher said...

Wait a minute, I'm moving to San Diego. Michellie AND dolphins?? Love it!