Happy New Year to y’all. I have offically declared 2009 as “The Year of the Dog!” I am gonna make sure that this year I spend time doing things I have never done before. With that said, I started off right away…

Today was the day of the 25th Annual Polar Bear Plunge here in Lacey. It took place at Long Lake, which is about 2 miles from my house. If you don’t know what a Polar Bear Plunge is, basically you get as many wacko’s as you can together and they jump into freakin’ cold water! This is something I had been saying for years that I wanted to do, but never did. Every year, on January 2nd, I read about it in the newspaper and say I am gonna have to do that one of these days. The next thing you know, it’s January 2nd again and I am saying the same thing. Not this year!

How this all came about is that my boss was telling me how our company was going to be a sponsor and asked me if I would work our tent at the event. He also started prodding me about jumping and I did mention that it was something I had always wanted to do, just so I could say I did. However, I told him it would have to be a game time decision cause I just didn’t know if my nerves would let me do it. See, I am not a water person and the thought of jumping into water (especially a lake), when I didn’t really have to, just made no sense to me. That’s like jumping out of a perfectly good airplane… for fun!?

Today I was prepared and when the jump approached, I was ready to go. We started out on to the dock about 15 minutes prior to the jump and those 15 minutes went by SOOOO slowly! With the wind blowing periodically, it got cold! The water was a balmy 38 degrees! All I could think of was the scene from National Lampoon’s Vacation where Clark Griswold is about to jump into the swimming pool at their hotel, “This is crazy! This is crazy! This is crazy!”

With the final countdown under way, 3…2…1… JUMP! People went flying into the water all around me. My problems were as such, beyond the fact I just dont jump into water like that for fun when it’s hot and we go swimming, I wasn’t sure how deep the water was and wanted to be somewhere that I wouldn’t hit bottom too fast and I didnt want to hit anyone. As you can see in the video, I stalled a bit. People jumped, then started swimming back to the dock, I have no clue why, but they were in my way. Once I saw a place I could jump without hitting anyone… BOMBS AWAY!

The water was FREAKIN’ COLD! Those first few seconds in the water made me wonder what the heck I was thinkin’ when I decided to do it! Those thoughts quickly left and were replaced with an adrenaline rush that was AWESOME! A sense of accomplishment come over me as I was wiping my eyes as I realized I had done it! Man what a feeling!! I will tell you this, this will now be my New Years tradition, no matter if it’s here in Lacey or wherever I might be. It gives you a sense of being alive that you just don’t understand until you do it. I can’t believe I waited this long to do it!