Birthday suits and Split

“Bwar! Bwarrrrrrrr!” Shaun yelled as soon as she was submerged in the icy Adriatic.

“Shhh,” I had urged her, moving my body to keep warm in the water. “No one knows we are here.”

Despite our best efforts to keep quiet, we couldn’t. Our smiles, our squeals of discomfort and adrenaline as the frigid water swirled around our bodies, our elation at getting away with it,  there was no way we could be silenced.

After an epic evening in Split, my new friend and I had decided now was the perfect time to go skinny dipping in the Adriatic Sea.

I knew if I would have declined her suggestion there was a good chance I would never do it. And, I also knew there was a good chance if I had turned it down, such an opportune moment might never present itself again. I had made it my goal to go outside of my comfort zone, and this certainly did just that.

So, I did what any slightly intoxicated traveler in a foreign land would do — hastily removed all of my clothes, threw them on the sidewalk next to the water, and, along with Shaun, plunged into the inky black sea.

The first thing I felt was bliss.

I was naked. In the Adriatic Sea. Thousands and thousands of miles away from my norm. And it felt absolutely amazing. Empowering. FREE.

The second thing I felt was the cold water seeping into my pores. During the day, in the heat of the sun, the water had still been somewhat chilly. But, it was tolerable because of the daylight. And, because who on earth would let the slightly not warm water stop them from experiencing Split’s greenblue beauty? I sure wasn’t.

But, at night with nothing to keep you warm except some alcohol coursing through your blood, it was damn cold.

The third thing I felt was pain.

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