This is the pier at Mon Repos that I was looking for! You have to walk through gardens to get there, down a hill from which you can see the old stone pier jutting out. It has much more character than the newly constructed wooden one at the beach bar. The water either side of it is deep and clear and in parts The stone is broken away. It is not very wide and yet its surface is high above the water – so high that I elect to get in from the small beach area.
I swim out and look back. On the cliff there is a temple of sorts, perched among the crags. Below the surface my nose fills with bubbles and I hold my breath and listen to the quiet. I swim past the pier, letting myself glide, scoping out the bay from one side to the other. And then I put my face in again and see hundreds – literally hundreds of tiny silver-blue fish darting right at me. I hold my breath and witness them flying by me on all sides. I am just another big, barely moving obstacle to them – like a rock, or the stones that make up the pier itself. I turn to watch them moving as one, magical, flashing in the sunlight that marbles the seabed and my arms and legs and head.
I hold my breath for as long as I can, trying to really remember all of this. The water holds so much life that we never see. Its blue and green and salty and cold and constantly, constantly shifting. I finally haul myself out and sit at the end of the long stone pier, letting the sun dry the salt off my skin.
I’m raising money for the Alzheimer’s Society. Please sponsor me at http://www.justgiving.com/swimbonnieswim