Thursday, October 12, 2006

swimming the english channel

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.


Anonymous said...

Hi again Dawn
Let's see, what kind of joke can we make about this post. Hmmm...(elevator music for 2 minutes).
Here's a great idea for a new instant perfume.
First, bring a jar to the White Cliffs of Dover. Open it briefly and then close the lid. Put this jar away and then repeat with four more jars. On the fifth jar you attach the following label and put it up for sale on eBay: "Instant Channel No. 5 - Just add water!"
Uncle Joe

mojo said...

Happy birthday again Dawn! i think it's a lofty and entirely possible goal to consider. Weather or not you do it is not as important as what happens along the way to doing it. (what that's been said before?)
Hope you had a day!

mssoteria said...

Do you have your spirituality/water essays yet?

Great idea!

'Jesus stood and cried, saying "If any man thirst, let him come unto me and drink. He (she) that believes on me, as the Scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water!!!'

Swim on!!!!

Martin said...

Check out I took 5 teams of 6 to Dover two years ago and they swam to France & back! They were a real mix of ages, ability and gender. The youngest was my daughter, 13, and the oldest 61.
If you want to do it you just train and get plenty of cold water swimming in. You need to be doing 3,000 metres an hour, 4 to 5 days a week.
Ali is a great swimmer and really nice as are most of the gang in Dover.
Enjoy, perservere and don't listen to anyone who says you are nuts!!!!

Anonymous said...

Hey, did you swim the channel? Its a goal that comes and goes for me but I'm currently trying to figure out how to do it. I also read swimming to Antarctica. WOW is all that I can say. I think its great you would even try!