Tuesday, September 03, 2013

Swimming Without Suits

Some would call it *almost* skinny dipping.

Others would call it crazy.

We called it family bonding.

Last week on vacation, we hiked to Narnia. Narnia is a very cool place at Inter Varsity's Cedar Campus with great big rocks dotting the water, and a wooded area where the trees are actually growing over the rocks. It took us about 45 minutes to get there and, by the time we arrived, we were quite warm. **Read that: It was hot, and we were sweaty.
We sat down our picnic lunches and began jumping from rock to rock. (A no-no according to Cedar Campus policy, but how could we resist?) And before we knew it, Josh had thrown off his shirt, jumped into the water, and was swimming to a rock farther out in the lake. Matthew was intrigued by his brother's method of cooling off and exploring rocks, so he threw off his shirt and shorts and jumped into the water in his boxers. And Brian followed suit.
Which left Elizabeth and I sitting on a big rock contemplating how we could go swimming.

After going through various options, and looking to Brian for moral support ("It'll be family bonding," he said.), it became an issue of I-will-if-you-will.
And, we did.
Elizabeth and I threw off our shirts and shorts and jumped in the water, too.
We all swam from rock to rock, fully enjoying the adventure. At times with our teeth chattering, and at times laughing so much we forgot how cold the water was. Certainly not thinking about how hot and sweaty we were just moments before.
There came a time when Brian and I had to take turns helping a very cold and tired Matthew swim back to the mainland, and for a moment I wondered if this escapade had been such a good idea after all. But - once we were all safely back, and beginning to warm up again - I can honestly say, I was so glad we'd done it.
Even more so, I was so glad I had participated. My nature tends to be one of playing-by-the-rules and doing-what's-safe-and-comfortable. Stripping down to almost-nothing and jumping off big rocks into cold water simply isn't "normal" for me. It would be much more likely for me to caution my family about doing something so crazy, and then to sit safely on the perch of a dry rock while I watch the rest of them have fun together.
But this time, I joined in.
It was cold, almost risque, and ever-so-slightly dangerous.

And it was totally worth it for the family bonding!


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