Pooks Swimming Hole in the Battenkill, one of the places I go to swim.

All along the Battenkill, close to where we live, there are swimming holes.

Some are under covered bridges, with ropes tied to trees when you can swing into the river.  Some people just jump off the roof of the bridge into the water.

These are the places where the river is deep enough to swim in.  Where there’s  a small sandy area where families can sit in beach chairs and wade into the water without having to walk  on round river rocks.

They’re also places that are accessible.  Where there a place to park your car, usually on the edge of a cornfield.

These are the places were people launch their tubes and kayaks or land on the other end of their trip down the river.

These places aren’t run by the town, county or state.  No one collects money for parking, or picks up the garbage,  there are no life guards.

I imagine they’ve always been the places where people went to swim or launch their boats.  The Native Americans, before the Scotch and Irish dominated the area.

And now me.

On hot days, days in the 90’s like it’s been here this week, the Battenkill is my salvation. A five minute drive on back roads from our house,  it delivers me of the heat that invades my body. I swim long enough to cool off then,  baptized by its waters I emerge refreshed and renewed.

On Monday, when it was the hottest here, I went twice.

But I won’t be going to the river today.  Forth of July on the Battenkill in Washington County is like rush hour on the Long Island Expressway.

Instead of having lunch at the Round House with my friends Athena and Mandy, we’ll  be away from the crowds cooling off in Athena’s pool.  Then I’m taking the rest of the day off.

Taking a holiday.

I don’t have any plans, the best kind of Holiday in some ways.

I imagine I’ll do some reading ( I’m in the middle of Sy Montgomery’s  The Soul of an Octopus.  Octopuses are mollusks, just like snails! And yes, it’s Octopuses not Octopi) maybe some drawing.  When it gets dark, I’m sure we’ll hear the distant booming of fireworks from the next town over, maybe even see a rogue firework or two.

So now I’m off to lunch and the rest of my day.

I hope you enjoy your day in your own way.

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