I was looking for this story and finally found it in an old blog I had not deleted yet. It is from July 2015. I copied it and edited it lightly. So glad 😁 it was still live! Anyway, I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I did kayaking!
This is a photo from this summer on an Alaskan lake. I was wearing shorts and a tank top and it was HOT outside. It was not from tonight’s experience.
It has been a long week. I had wanted to go to the beach today and walk, but once I got home, I just stayed put. The weather had been really warm and the outside temp, at 1045 pm, still read 60 degrees F. I was alone at the house and realised I could do something I’d never done before, something from my someday list. So, I stripped to almost nothing, slipped into a flannel shirt that almost covered my panties, grabbed my life jacket, and popped down to the lake.
The lake was as still as bathwater, but much colder. The surface had a fuzzy sheen as it was covered in fluff from black cottonwood. You could see the different kinds of trees and the remnants of the sunset reflecting on the dark water. The entire scene projected peace. Our lake is in the shape of a key. Our house is on one side of the long part and we now have neighbors on the other side. I glided up to the handle part of the key and paddled to the side where no one would see me.
I then shrugged off my life jacket and stuffed it down by my feet; toed off my water shoes; delicately squiggled my way out of my panties (NOT easy in a kayak), leaving them by my shoes; and pushed my flannel shirt behind me to lean back on. I was as free as a 60’s chick at Woodstock!
The tranquil setting was perfect. I dipped the paddle into the cotton dotted lake and when I felt the air move, I stopped. The kayak drifted lightly with the momentum of the breeze. Not far, it was just enough to rustle the leaves in the trees and disturb my hair a bit. It felt lovely on my skin. I could feel all the cares of the week fall away. The lake water dripping on my body was cool, but not unpleasant. I felt completely one with the world around me. I could hear mum’s dog barking in the house, people talking at the neighbor’s, and yet those noises of humanity didn’t matter. I relished the sounds of the birds calling, the branches moving in conversation with their leaves, and the splash of the ducks as they wove patterns on the glassy surface of their home. I stayed on the lake for quite a while. Not quite until dark, but am sure it was after midnight when I beached the kayak on the shore (after getting ‘dressed’ again!). It was an idyllic evening etched in my memory for life.
The only thing that would have made this better was if it had been raining. Although, Alaskan rain is rarely warm.