If someone said “Go jump in the lake” you’d think they were telling you to take a hike, right? Well, when it was as hot as it was last Monday, you might just take them up on it, and that is just what I did.
Manitoba, the province where I live, has ever changing weather. One moment it is freezing, and the next the sun is threatening to bake your brains. That’s just the type of day Monday turned out to be, first cold, (cold enough to wear a sweater and many layers), then hot by late afternoon.
Unlike my travel companions, I’d climbed into the family car, destined for a drive through Lake of the Woods, (an area known to most Canadians as an area of great recreation), dressed in jeans, t-shirt, and hoodie. Everyone else anticipated the chill in the air would give way to sunshine, and they wore light clothing, t-shirts, shorts, even bathing suits!
Driving for two hours we reached our destination just as the thermostat read 30 degrees Celsius. Sparkling lakes scatter the landscape in various sizes, from large to small, shallow to deep, but all have one thing in common, soft, golden, glacier temperature water.
I felt rather smug watching my family held their breath and gritted their teeth as the waves lapped at their mid sections, but I have to admit, it did look refreshing, and I started to long for other clothing options.
I had other reasons for covering up too. We’ve had a cool, rainy summer, and my legs are as white as the snow most commonly covering this flat region. Were I to show much skin, the beach dwellers might have a new reason to wear sunglasses.
My discomfort must have been obvious. Eventually my mother in law suggested I join them, simply jump in, jeans and all.
Jump in? In my clothes? How absurd. Yet, tempting.
I looked at the water with longing, then to my long restrictive clothing. I stood, dusted myself off, then did as she suggested, and took a flying leap in the lake. It was cold, cold enough to make me shriek, gasp, hold my breath until I turned blue, but at least I wasn’t hot anymore. And swimming in jeans isn’t as bad as it sounds, sure it’s not as freeing as a tiny spandex bathingsuit, and no where near the thrill of skinny dipping, but when you’re as hot as a fire alarm fire, you think it’s the best gig going.
It made me think of another time when wearing that much clothing in the water was a normal thing, and any less was scandalous! I mean, I could’ve been wearing something like this.
I splashed about, barely held back by the weight of my waterlogged jeans, and eventually hauled myself out of the lake, entirely refreshed.
I sat in the back seat, on a bundle of towels, in my squelchy, dripping, tight jeans, with enough sand lining the insides to make a beach envious. By the time we got home I was nearly dry.
Was it worth it? Heck yes.