I went to the Dolphin Club today and swam in the bay. I'd been looking forward to it for a whole week. I've never done open-water swimming before, or been in the ocean/bay without a wetsuit. This was a first for both. A buddy of mine who has been out there a few times served as the necessary wingman/motivation to actually go ahead and try it out.
I got out of the water after 5 minutes because I was feeling really euphoric, which I foolishly figured was the beginnings of hypothermia. In fact, I think I was just stoked. Walking up the stairs to the club, my head was swimming in that same delightful way you experience just as an opioid is taking effect. Whoa.
Swimming there was awesome and I intend to do it many more times. The water was about as warm as it gets (58 degrees). We'll see how much I like it when it gets down to 50. I wish I had stayed out for longer. It was interesting trying to fight the intense reflex to breathe shallow and pull as hard and fast as you possibly could. When I go by there on my bike, the regulars always seem to swim pretty slow.
With luck I'll become a regular and ditch my crazy expensive gym membership. Nature's pool is right outside my office.