I send you greetings from my home waters — the Peconic Bay on Eastern Long Island. I made a quick escape here on my day off this week and told my mom that all I wanted to do for the short time I’m here is swim in the bay and spend time with my family (including my delicious 7-month-old nephew). Eating a slice or two from my favorite hometown pizza parlor was also allowed.
It wasn’t the perfect beach day; the wind was kicking up and the sun was struggling to shine consistently, and, oh yes, there were more than a few harmless but gooey comb jellies in the water. And as much as I wanted to get into the bay, the bay apparently wanted to get into me as well: I swallowed a big old mouthful while doing the breaststroke.
But being in those choppy waters was exactly what I needed.
Here’s what it means to me to immerse in this bay: Letting everything else go.
This is where a new something can once again begin to emerge from old nothing. This is where the soul’s burnt and arid soil begins to sprout the tiniest yellow-green shoots. This is where there is nothing at all that needs doing and I can just be a body floating and breathing. This is the second womb.
Maybe your home waters aren’t waters at all. Maybe there’s a special place in some other natural setting. Maybe there’s a particular room in a particular house.
Maybe the “waters” you immerse in to rejuvenate are a flavor, a smell, a poem or song you carry with you everywhere.
Whatever and wherever your home waters, I wish you easy access, a deep immersion, and the lingering taste of their salt on your skin.