"Each step forward has a sacred meaning of its own"   Sri Chinmoy

Haraki Bay Swim - September 2023 - Rhodes

On Rhodes for just a few days I found myself staying with Kokila at an idyllic bay on the calm, east coast of the island. The sea was like a smooth pond in the mornings and had a few ripples and waves in the afternoon. There was no tide to speak of - barely a few inches of change in the height of the water in the course of a day. So different from the english sea!

On our first full day I strapped on the tow float (though it was not really needed - just force of habit) and headed out into the mild, still waters to complete a lap of the bay.

Going north to start with I was swimming towards the headland with the looming ruins of Feraklos Castle to my left. I was mostly breathing to the right which led my gaze out to sea. There was nothing to see apart from the flat, calm horizon - no boats, no waves. Occasionally I saw another swimmer but mainly it was just me and the Aegean. With the water around 28 degrees and the air well over 30 I was finding this the most welcoming sea I had ever swum in. Dodging a couple of moored boats, I tried to get as close as I could to the shore, but found myself at one point over a kind of reef. Here I was worried about getting too shallow so while I enjoyed seeing the fish, chasing them through submarine canyons, I began to steer for deeper water. Even out at the edge of the bay it was still pretty shallow.

The crossing from one headland to the other was smooth and easy - I was swimming slowly, taking a breath every 4 strokes, so I could enjoy looking at the sea bed. Snorkel-less snorkelling? Once over at the rocks by Argo (a restaurant built to resemble a ship, nestling in the rocky headland) I was treated to more marine life among the rocks. Here I made a final turn and followed the sea front back to our spot in the middle. Garmin gave me 1.2 miles in 24minutes but I think it was more like 1.2 km. The most peaceful water I have had the opportunity to immerse myself in - a very serene swim.

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