Have I mentioned lately that it's hot here in sunny So Cal? I did? Well, it bears repeating again. It's hot. Damn hot. I realize that some like it hot, but I am having trouble finding any joy in hell itself.
You know how people who live where it snows a lot just hit their limit of snow? Like, so many years pass and they're done. Finished. Must move where it doesn't snow. Well, I've hit my limit of heat, of sun. After almost 30 years in this insanity (and I grew up in a desert, so it got hot, yo), I have hit my limit. Check. Got all the vitamin D I need. I don't need it to get above 75 ever again. Done.
I always wear sunscreen, because I grew up swimming and in the age of skin cancer and I want to take care of myself. But on days like this, I always feel like it's never enough, like maybe I should have slathered on 4 more layers or so of SPF 30. At this rate, I'll still end up with skin cancer and die an ugly death (ugly because my face will be marred by melanoma). I'm not making fun here, it's scary. And also ridiculous.
On one of the last flights I took, the flight attendant looked like a goddamn saddlebag. I could tell she was pretty at some point, with her nice smile and very coiffed, blonde hair and Tiffany charm bracelet. But I could not get past her unnaturally brown, leathery skin. *shiver*
I do not ever want to look like that.
So I slather on the Coppertone and hope for the best. Like I said, I was raised swimming. My mom was a pool manager my whole life, a swim instructor, and both my parents were life guard instructors. I was in the pool before I was walking. It's one of the best things of my childhood. I was a natural fish and took my first jump off the high dive (with help) at 2.
So it's no surprise that I spent most of my life in the sun. In the water under the sun. I'm sure some cancer is brewing under my skin by this point.
But I do still love to swim. If there were a decent indoor pool in my town, I'd go there instead, but they're uncommon in a place that gets so much sunshine. And the local pool where I like to swim laps opens in a week for lap time. I cannot wait. I won't get the full summer's use (moving to Oregon at some point soon), but I'll go after work as many days as I can.
There are two forms of exercise that I have always and will always love: dance and swimming. I like to run, but this is a recent development in the last 2 years. But dancing and swimming are my great loves and for two completely different reasons.
I dance because it's an escape. When you dance, you cannot think about anything but the steps. Your brain has to be completely focused. And once you learn the steps and muscle memory kicks in, you're thinking about the music and technique and presentation and a million other things. Whatever thoughts you had before cannot exist when you're dancing.
I swim because I can think and swim at the same time. Swimming is a completely natural process. I kick and a stroke and my body glides through the water with very little effort from my brain. So if I want to think things through and get my head straight, I swim.
But there is of course how glorious my body feels doing both of these things. Glorious.
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