The English Channel is 21 miles wide. However, the hardy individuals who swim across the English Channel rarely swim only 21 miles because there are currents to consider and it's a major shipping thru-way, and then there is the weather...
Why do I know these interesting facts?
I got my pool membership today, and I’m drawn and drawn again to swimming, and to water. I can’t wait to get into the water. So of course, I think, why don’t I swim the English Channel? Isn’t that what anyone would think? Or is it this kind of thinking that makes me special/insane?
So I google “swim ‘English Channel.” Another interesting fact: most of the women who swim the English Channel are definitely – well, they are curvy, zaftig, however you want to put it. Bottom line: they have some weight on them, which (and this is very important) keeps them warm. From the photographs I’ve seen, this is not a sport for skinny people. Do you know that woman named Alison Streeter (that's her, in the photo above) holds the world record for channel crossings (43 and counting, including a triple crossing). Alison looks like a very nice person. Rather than giving the air of a super human athlete, she seems, well, down-to-earth, very much like she might get up in the morning and say, let’s go swim the English Channel again today -- wanna join me?
Back to earth. Two goals: start swimming 3-5 days a week, at least a half mile each day. And for the “Documenting the Sacred” class I’m teaching, commit to polishing at least three essays around the idea of spiritulity and water.
And if I do that, look into open water swims for this spring/summer.
Maybe I'll swim the English Channel by the time I’m 40. I feel a little foolish and audacious, but what the hell – it’s my birthday. And wouldn’t it be fun if it happened?
p.s. I’m also going to purchase Lynne Cox’s Swimming to Antarctica, because outlandish goals require new books.