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Bob Burrow


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English Channel 2017

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Bob Burrow

After 67 days of social distancing, physical distancing, bad weather, no pools and frigid open water it was time. Time to jump back in…yes…back into the water-yikes!

My friend Sonja was heading to Littleton, MA to swim with some friends so I decided to join in.  It was a 40 minute drive from Boston that I faced with some trepidation as there was some concern about water temp and if I would actually be able to swim after such a long hiatus.

It was a tranquil scene at Long Lake as we gathered early at 7:00am. The group all wore wetsuits. Intentionally, I left my wetsuit at home so I was skins.  I heard the water was 64 degrees so I thought it would be doable.

The water felt a touch cool in the morning air but was a pretty easy wade into the water to waist level.  Ok, the first concern was alleviated the water temp would be fine-phew.  Next would I actually be able to swim? I submerged and shoved off the bottom and started to swim. One arm and then the next and repeat. It felt really weird and awkward like my arms weren’t in-synch. They probably weren’t.

We swam 2400 yards in a very slow 40 minutes with some breaks a long the way. It was harder than expected physically and mentally too.  I was back(ish)!

Since then I have swum twice at Ben’s Bayou aka Pam’s Pond aka Lake Cochituate shoving off from Ben’s dock.

Has the swimming become easier and less awkward? Maybe.

It is going to a long road back but we will be back!*

Open water season has officially started in New England.  Pool swimming is phase 2 or 3 of the pandemic reopening process. That too will be interesting. What is a flip turn?

Swimming is important to me however seeing all my swimming friends again has been the best part~it more than just the swimming.

*confirms that I made the right decision to postpone Catalina until 2021






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