It starts with an email: “I’m thinking about swimming tomorrow, anyone else?” More emails float in as the women in my water aerobics group weigh in on air temperature, how cold the lake might be, wind factor, how sunny it is, algae reports, our schedules. Usually one crazy voice saying “I’m going!” is enough to tempt a few others to join.
This year, we are bolder, more daring, willing to tolerate some not-quite-ideal conditions to continue our swimming and water aerobics into autumn. We’ve been eager and giddy in the face of pushing past our goal date of Sept 15 (as I wrote about in part 1, The Mermaids of Lake Nokomis). We crank up the heat in the car on the way home after we emerge shivering from the water, and some have brought fluffy robes to wear afterwards. Continue reading
What does it take to find bits of magic in your life? Sometimes all you need is a lake and friends and a desire to move your body. That’s what happened for me.
It started in July of 2020. Many of us women had been taking water aerobics classes at the YWCA for years together, several times a week. We’d become a community who knew each other’s faces and stories, who laughed and breathed hard, and sometimes complained together.
When COVID came along, of course the Y and everything else shut down. As the summer ticked by, one of our members who had been a former water aerobics teacher had the brilliant idea to start emailing to see if anyone was interested in having some unofficial classes at one of the city lakes a few times a week. Everyone loved that idea. Continue reading
I started my quarantine one year ago today.
Bob and I had spent the weekend in an AirBnB near Eau Claire, Wisconsin, having a writing retreat with our writing buddy and her partner. It was a good time, fun and creative, working on our writing by day and going out to eat at night. The University of Minnesota had started shutting down to in-person classes a few days before, and the virus was becoming a reality.
But no one was sure of everything yet, so we ate in busy restaurants, just starting to feel a little creeped out but unsure of what we needed to do. By the time we got home, we knew the lockdown was on. Continue reading
Here we are, Valentine’s Day 2021. This might be a day of sweetness for you: romance or cozy love, chocolate and flowers. It might be deflating and speak of “lack” for you, leave you feeling sad or lonely. Perhaps you scoff at this commercialized Hallmark holiday, or it isn’t on your radar at all.
I love you.
We are fellow humans on this rickety rollercoaster of Life together. We have more in common than we think. Despite our differences, we all bleed, laugh, grieve, wonder, die. We all stumbled our way through 2020 and are figuring out how to live in this new (hopefully better) year. Continue reading