Well, they're right.
Everybody told me that the water around here is just too cold for swimming.
But of course, my having grown up by Mukilteo, made me think I could get away with it. Mukilteo is a native name for "Good Hunting Ground," or "Place where the ducks died," which, if you think about it, really means the same thing. Mukilteo is about 30 miles north of Seattle, and sort of cock-eyed over from Everett, which is also the home town of Senator Scoop Jackson, and the last place Jack London left his boat. At that place on the globe, you can imagine that the water is pretty cold.
It was cold for the Puget Sound. It wasn't the Pacific Ocean, or even the Strait of Juan de Fuca -- which you can imagine how we'd pronounce when we were kids, if there were no grownups around.
Anyway, we'd swim in the Puget Sound in the winter. Well, not so much swim in it as push each other into it. But we'd go on pushing each other into it, and not jumping out screaming.
I made up for that today. The water was absolutely clear, and nearly still, so you could see the pure clean pebble bottom. I waded in up to my knees, and that was all right. Then I fell in.
I will admit I managed to jump into it twice more, but that made for a magic three, and that's all of that pie I ever want again. I'm still cold, and I'll be lucky if I don't catch something.
I have now officially swum in the water in Clallam Bay, and I will be damned if I ever do it again. Not even for charity.