Tuesday, September 19, 2006
Waterskiing at dawn when the still chilled waters reflect the crimson colors of the crisp fall foliage is a moment where I wish time was not so relentless. I pause, close my eyes for but a moment and exhale slowly watching the fog of my breath drift above my brow. I boldly stand atop the dew drenched stern and prepare to dive into the calm waters. It's always difficult to determine which of us will taste the sweet morning air first from behind the boat. Today, this day, it has been determined that I will be the first to carve the untouched waters.
I am well prepared for this moment. My wetsuit shorts are firmly pressing against my cold skin, gloves snug around each finger, lifevest buckled with neatly wrapped straps and a boat with a full tank of gas. My 42 foot ski rope has been double checked for any hidden knots and I grip the seasoned handle like the Great Bambino and his mighty bat. And then finally, sliding silently from my reluctance I take the plunge into the cold water and effortlessly float back to the surface.
There is something magical about those two or three seconds where your body first meets the morning water. Perhaps it's like a baby in the womb completely surrounded, safe, and secure with a muffled silence. As I rise out of the water and refill my greedy lungs I find the waterski floating next to me. It had been carefully placed in the crystal clear water and nudged in my direction.
The rope slowly begins to slide through the water like a snake in the grass. I quickly find my balance while gripping the ski handle and all of a sudden there is tension in the rope. The fumes from the boat motor linger and fill my nostrils as I am slowly being dragged along. The driver, a well seasoned waterski veteran, has a firm grip on the boats throttle and is patiently waiting the for the word. I take one last breath, and holler, "Hit it!"
The morning silence broken, the calm waters tainted, and my heart pounding and pushing the warming blood through my veins. The day has begun, the day has begun.
Posted by John Howell at 9:49 PM