Early Monday morning – like most weekday mornings - I was down at the beach having a swim in the sea with my (fellow-female-heading-towards-50-year-old) buddies. All our kids are back at school/college/work after the Danish 6-week-long summer holiday and, alack alas, the summery weather is beginning to follow suit. Yep, the afternoons can be positively tropical but there’s a definite chill in the air before sunrise and after sundown. (Note to self: keep old towels in the garage, for wiping the dew off the bikes in the morning.) The water temperature, which peaked at around 21c (70f) last month, is now cooling down, day by day. So there we were, sitting on the shore, sipping tea from our thermos, nibbling figenstænger (fig bars) and mourning the passing of summer…
This morning there had been a (sea)change. Yes, okay, the water was colder than it has been the last couple of weeks. The first couple of strokes actually took my breath away. (Note to self: remember to put my asthma inhaler back in my swimming bag.) But when we came out of the water, we weren’t sad about the passing of summer. We were excited about autumn and winter and all the bathing adventures that lie ahead! Hooray, no pesky stinging summer jellyfish to worry about! Bathing in huge waves. Bathing in the fog. Bathing in the pouring rain. Bathing at sundown. Bathing when it’s so windy that we have to tie our dressing gowns to the bridge so they don’t fly away. Skating across the ice on the bathing bridge, dressed only in dressing gowns and bathing shoes. Bathing on the First of December dressed in – and only in - a Santa Hat. Jumping over the ice on the sand in order to get into the sea. Bathing in slush ice.
Yep. Been there. Done all of that. And are excited and ready to do it all again! Vinterbadning? Det er livet! Winterbathing? This is the life!
Fancy having a go yourself? NOW is the time to start. Take the plunge while the water is still relatively warm and then keep going, taking one day at a time. Go read my Winterbathing for Dummies (Part One – Be Prepared!), (Part Two – Taking the Plunge!)and (Part Three – The Aftermath) for my tips and tricks.
So, see you in the sea?