Twelve miles of water splits New Jersey and Delaware. It’s shorter than the Chesapeake, but it doesn’t feel it because there’s no bridge to measure your progress against. There’s just water and water and water.
The fresh water from the Delaware flows into salt and pushes out of the bay. The tide presses back twice a day. Big swells roll off the Atlantic from storms across the sea. Wind drives waves, choppy and sharp. Some water’s warm, some cold, some filled with sand. It swirls and bleeds into itself, forms lines, mixes, and churns.
I only touch the top few inches, but there’s a monster underneath them, pushing, shoving, breathing.
Lines of smooth crash into waves. Color changes from brown to green. Sheets of water slide together. Swirls spin where the wind and current fight for control.
And I race across, barely touching any of it, feeling every breath.