Well, that grabbed your attention, didn’t it?

Today is the first day of 2014. I woke about 6:30am. I was cold in bed. It was not very light outside. I could hear quite persistent rain drumming on the roof of our bach. I rolled over and tried to get warm.

I had had thoughts, back in Christchurch, of welcoming the new year in ceremonially with a dip in the lake. No way. Not with that rain. And I was still cold. I made a cup of coffee, put my winter pjs and fluffy socks on over top of my skimpy summer ones. Then with my headlamp on I read my book. Andrew was still sleeping. Eventually I fell asleep again.

When I woke it was after 9am. Back home I am a terrible sleeper. But when on holiday I make up for it. Anyway it was still cold, even with a fire burning. It was still raining. I stayed in my pjs, adding ugg boots to complete the look.

Late morning it cleared slightly. I grabbed that opportunity to go for a bike ride. Wrapped up in multiple layers of merino and fluro, topped with beanie and gloves I set off for the Tophouse circuit. It was 90mins of undulations, some tar sealed, some shingle roads. I enjoyed it all. Yes I got wet and muddy – again. I returned to an empty bach. The boys had gone to play with Robbie’s bow and arrow, shooting at inanimate targets up Teetotal Flats. I pondered having a shower or just getting into dry running clothes, knowing I needed to run later on. I went for running clothes.

More book. More rain. More food. More cross-stitch. More rain. More sleep.

Late afternoon and I am antsy. All this sitting and eating is not good for anyone. I decided to run and do my strength exercises. Destination West Bay via Peninsula Track. It was an easy run to West Bay. I started my exercises – 12 mountain climbers. I heard thunder. The clouds were black. 12 press-ups. More thunder.

Not keen to be killed by lightening as I ran through the bush I decided to head home. I stopped and did some more exercises – 12 walking lunges, 12 tuck jumps. More running. 12 lateral jumps over a drain, 12 sideways jumps. There was no more thunder and the sky was brightening. This weather is confused. 12 jump squats, 12 prisoner squats. I came to a little track down to the lakefront. It was like a private beach. A lightbulb moment! I went down to the beach. And walked along. It was very secluded. Only about a metre of stones between the manuka and the lake. There was no-one around. Would I? Could I? Carpe diem and all that. I did. Stripped off all my clothes but left my socks on and strode into the lake. Expecting the water to be freezing I was pleasantly surprised. It was a quick dip but it counts. My first ever skinny dip!! Ok so I still had my socks on but otherwise I would just slip on the slimy stones. A number of strokes. A full submersion of my head. Yes, definitely counts.

I got out and put my clothes back on. 12 bicycle crunches, 12 v crunches. I carried on running. And met a lot of people also taking advantage of the short break. What they thought of me running along, dripping wet hair and grinning like the proverbial cheshire cat. Who cares. I finished my run with a 30 second prone hold and 12 burpees. As I left the lake to run a circuit of the village, I looked up towards the lakehead. The cloud had lifted and I could see fresh snow on the tops.

As I sit here in this cosy bach with the fire blazing, it has suddenly become very dark. There is a lot more thunder now. And lightening. The wind is blowing strongly and the rain sounds like it contains ice. But inside I am glowing with the first wow of my year done and dusted. My first skinny dip. Hard to believe that I had got to this point in my life without trying it, but actually the opportunity had never arisen.

Now it is time for more nudity – a hot shower and then back into my pjs and ugg boots.


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