More holidayness

For Christmas I ate my body weight in roast lamb and homemade custard ice cream. Then went for a swim in my freezing cold rock pool with my brother-in-law.

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The tiny blob on the left is me.

Was struggling to dive below two meters without a weight belt (considering how much food I’d eaten I should have theoretically sunk  quicker than the Lusitania)

Still, I managed to salvage some sea urchin shells off the bottom.

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I actually got eight. But broke two before I got home.

The first time did any free diving (in an abandoned water filled open cast mine) my instructor asked me how long I could hold my breath for. ‘Thirty seconds maybe’ I mumbled. He proceeded to prove me wrong by getting me in a headlock holding me underwater for more than a minute before my body started going limp.

Shallow water blackout kills free divers. His approach to teaching free diving was that you should learn this immediately through experience. This formative engagement was meant to demonstrate that you can push past your limitations… my take away was more that you pass out before you start taking on water. Which was both comforting and traumatic.

I like free diving in warm water where I can see coral and brightly colored fish. Eerie Kelp forests and dark murky water scares the hell out of me. Mostly because I’m scared of sharks. And leviathans. And kraken. And drowning. And accidentally getting shot by my dive buddy. I’m also claustrophobic which is kinda limiting.

Still… I like the concept. And so I try an attempt the ‘lite’ version of free diving whenever possible.

Otherwise I’ve just been relaxing.

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The view from my kitchen window.

Didn’t beach run. Will try again tomorrow. The soft sand murdered me. I feel like a noob. So I’ve been consulting a tide chart to make sure I have compact sand to jog on before I commit myself again. There is one particular muscle in each of my calves that clearly doesn’t get used when you road run. Definitely know all about it now.

Been reading on and off, alternating between Musashi (which I’m quite enjoying even if it is a 1000 page tome) and Ikigai (which so far feels like a mash up ‘Japanese’ stoicism and Victor Frankl Logotherapy). I like it!

I must admit generally I’m feeling quite good. I clearly needed a holiday and some separation from my other life. It’s given me something to think about.