Thanksgiving Paddle

Yesterday was cold and slipping into the lake felt like my chest was getting squeezed by a giant fist. I breathed short and shallow and I couldn’t stay in for long. Today was warmer without the bite, and I had a nice fire smouldering in the wood stove to warm up my goosefleshed limbs when I was done swimming.  I imagine the fish moving sluggishly, slowing down as the temperature sinks.  This time of year the lake is low and the beach stretches out yellow against the red changing leaves, it’s a totally different landscape than July.

I get this feeling sometimes where my whole body hums; I feel it inside my chest, my hands tremble slightly like a warmth, like a bee buzzing away, like a cat purring. My face can’t help smiling, my eyes sink back in the sockets relaxed-like, my shoulders relax, forehead relaxes.  Paddling by the rough stone cliffs poking out between stands of towering pines, scruffy cedars, red maples, silver and yellow birch trees shining in the sun, above the winking shimmering lake, to the sound of water lapping the shore makes my breath catch in my throat. It’s so beautiful I could cry with happiness. Days like today I am determined to build my life around a place where I can paddle every day. And have a fire every night.

I did a bit of whitewater today, and at the falls I called “SHE-LEE-LEE-LEE-LEE-LEE-LEE” into the thunder of the water.  I can’t stay in the city…
Still trying to work out a way to make it happen… 😀

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