bike: 8.5 miles
lake nokomis and back
63/70 degrees
air quality: 127

A little cool this morning biking to the lake. Canadian wildfires have made the air quality index rise to the “unhealthy for sensitive groups.” Not sure if it was that or something else, but my nose started closing up mid-bike and I had to breathe mostly through my mouth.

The ride was fine. I had some difficulty making sense of what I was seeing but because I’m always cautious — biking relatively slowly (11-12 mph) and making sure I stay far to the right in my lane, it didn’t matter that I couldn’t totally see what the bikers approaching me were doing.

Some rodent — probably a squirrel but maybe something else? — darted out of the bushes as I biked by and crossed the path just in front of me. Jesus! I exclaimed. Then I stewed over why squirrels seem to have a death wish. Or, do they like messing with humans?

On my bike ride back I had to go around 3 bikers (possibly kids) who had stopped and were spread out on the bridge at the bottom of the hill. They were looking over the side at something in Lake Hiawatha. At first, I wondered why they were stopped at such a dangerous spot. Then I wondered what they were looking at down there? Was it something strange?

swim: 3 loops
lake nokomis open swim
68 degrees

All the buoys were up this morning. Hooray! Bright sun, some wind. By the third loop the wind had picked up quite a bit and there were more waves then I’d like in the water. Hard to be buoyant, to breathe. Today is the last Friday swim of the season. I’m sad that it’s almost over, but I’m also tired and sore and my body — my back and right shoulder in particular — are ready for a break.

10 Things

  1. passing over the rope that tethers the green buoy to the lake floor, looking pale and dim in the opaque water
  2. more flashes, some might be fish, but others might be rays of light
  3. my favorite part of the swim: the stretch between the last green buoy and the first orange buoy
  4. a plane hovering in the sky
  5. reciting the line, It is time now, I said, for the deepening and quieting of the spirit among the flux of happenings, and feeling a deepness and sense of quiet briefly before losing it in the effort to stay high in the wavy water
  6. seeing the first green buoy without any problems — steady and bright
  7. not seeing the orange buoy — just water and sky in front of me — then briefly seeing it in that same spot, then having it disappear again
  8. instead of lining up their backpacks around the safety boat, most of today’s swimmers put their backpacks in the boat
  9. 2 kids swimming and playing near me at the end of my swim. One was obnoxious and was irritating the other
  10. a taller tree in the tree line on the far shore loomed in my periphery. I kept thinking it was a person on a paddle board

overheard: 2 swimmers near the shore, one coaching the other
coach: saying a bunch of stuff about streamlining and force and pushing through the water, then kick kick kick! Now swim to the orange buoy!
coached: I can’t do it! You’re pushing me too hard!
coach: Okay, swim to the white buoy instead

Did he swim to the white buoy? I’m not sure; I started swimming again before I could find it.