Moonlit Pond

Trevor sent in this story of a wonderful solo experience:

My parents live near a small town in a Western state. A few miles outside of town, our family owns property with a pond that we keep maintained. There are fish in the pond, but we use the pond mostly for swimming. They even built a water slide on an adjacent hillside going into the pond, making it an unbelievably fun place for family reunions.

I love tent camping by myself, so one spring day I headed to the pond. Rather than swim, I spent all evening laboriously setting up camp, getting the fire going, and cooking my tinfoil dinner. By 10 p.m., I was drowsy and about to turn in for the night when I realized how nice of a night it was. There was half of a gibbous moon in the sky, so I didn’t necessarily need a flashlight to see my way to the pond. I did a toe-check, and it felt fine! I decided I wasn’t going to bed until I took a dip!

I cannot count how many times growing up (or even as an adult) I’ve gone skinny dipping. My wife isn’t into it, so when I do, I always go alone. This felt like the ideal time. There is a nearby road and even a couple nearby cabins with a view, but one of them is a second home and was dark at the time, and the other one, which is lived in full time, doesn’t have a clear view of one end of the pond. Besides, it was dark enough outside they probably couldn’t see me from that distance.

In our pavilion, I stripped down to nothing and then clambered up the hill in my birthday suit. That was the tricky part. I could just make out the trail but there are rocks (and snakes occasionally bask during the day). It was a tad chilly going up to the top, but I made it without incident. At the top of the slide, there are a couple hoses that constantly feed river water into the slide from PVC pipes. The top half of the slide is made up of gigantic civic water pipes before you burst out into the open on black, plastic tarp before hitting the water.

Before I went, I took in what view I could see in the moonlight sitting at the top of the slide. The water feeding the slide was also a tad chilly, but not bad. Then I took the plunge. I’ve gone down that slide loads of times, but never in the dark. As soon as I took off, I immediately second-guessed myself, thinking I was going to break my neck and die. My family was going to come down to the pond the next morning to find their son lying face down, naked, in the pond!

I held my breath, anticipating the moment I hit water, which I assumed would feel colder when I was completely submerged. The pond is naturally warm during summer days because of its depth and the sun, but this was in the middle of the night! However, when I hit the water it felt absolutely heavenly. It felt exactly like a heated pool! I couldn’t help but run up the hill and go down again. I eventually just let myself float on my back and swim back and forth, letting it all hang out. I eventually got out, dried off, and turned in for the night.

While it hasn’t been the last time I’ve gone skinny dipping in the pond, unfortunately I haven’t had the chance to do it again at night. Yet!

Thanks, Trevor! That sounds dreamy. And you’re own private lakeside slide? That’s great!

-Jen

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