Ice Swimming

Monday, around 7PM, I felt unfulfilled. I had just eaten two bowls of soup and a big plate of potatoes, red cabbage and meat.

Maybe I felt lazy because of the carbohydrates. I decided to combat this, put on my white shorts and go for a swim. I packed a towel and my keys and off I went.

I went to the gas station first, to get a cup of coffee and prepare myself mentally for the upcoming task.

There I met a colleague and friend of mine. He lives just down the street. He became my colleague and friend by recognizing me at work, after which we had some cups of tea and a good talk about books, philosophy and habits. Just my kind of guy. Open minded. Most people say they are open minded, but deep down they have some fears left which disable them from living life to the fullest. This guy, on the other hand, is comfortable wearing women’s clothing, just because it feels good. That says enough.

I asked him if he wanted to go swimming with me. I prepared myself for a negative answer, but to my surprise he answered affirmatively. So we went for a walk, first to our homes to pick up a towel for him.

After we picked up the towel, we walked to the lakes near my house. We talked about the status of men versus women, how they complement each other and what the role of a man should be in modern society. We conversed about mythology, about modern superheroes and about our love lives.

Then we arrived at the lake. We took off our clothing and in we went. While I lowered myself gradually via a stepladder, my friend jumped in without thinking. I had major respect for that, immersing yourself in cold water is not an easy task.

The sun was down, the moon was shining and all the constellations were visible. It was a beautiful night. We decided we would swim around the pier, but I was kind of nervous since it was further than I had ever gone before.

Now let me tell you something about cold water. If you swim in it, you won’t feel your body after a while. All you do is think “swim or drown” and your body will do the movements for you. But you have to keep thinking to stay swimming or you’ll stop swimming and drown. You get into fight mode.

My friend afterwards described it as “wanting to just sink to the bottom so that he didn’t have to move anymore” but at the same time fighting that feeling and going for the end line. The feeling of having it made to the end line is amazing; you think “this was really uncomfortable but we made it!”

Yesterday we went swimming too. We met a man who was drinking beer on the pier. He was in his fourties and was wearing a baseball cap. We had a talk about music, festivals and how he respected us for going in the water. He also believed in chemtrails, which is always interesting.

It’s the uncomfortable that we have to fight. Whether it’s the fact that you procrastinate on your studies, don’t feel like working out, don’t feel like going to work, or swim in cold water, you have to set yourself to do it anyway. Once you’re done with it you can look back with an accomplished feeling.

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