The Eno is Durham's river, running (among other directions and places) between downtown and the northern suburbs and country area. I live north of the river, but quite close to it. Because of this, whenever I have some time to burn on a nice day (or a rainy one, for that matter!) I often head out to one of the many hiking trails along its length. Sometimes barefoot.
This time of year the woods by the river are just about as close to heaven as I can get. Everything is absolutely bursting with verdant life. There are tiny little toads the size of your pinky nail - no, really! - hopping around everywhere, and I caught a frog in a water-filled crevice in the rock today. And when the sun slants down and hits it just right, the whole forest just glows.
The best part about trekking around the woods right now is that, even though our September days are still pretty sticky-sweaty, you can always just dunk in the river and cool right down. Matter of fact, it's a Durham County ordinance that you have to at least wade every time you go to the Eno. Totally true fact.
So I usually end up immersed whenever I go there. I don't have a bathing suit that fits and if I did I doubt it would be very comfortable to hike in. Solution: I just swim in my clothes and keep a towel in the car. In this case, I had on the normal uniform: high-cut black sports bra, ankle-length loose black pants and a ratty shirt that doubled as a foot-towel so I wouldn't have to re-shoe with muddy feet. Walking back from my swimming hole (some distance upriver from the adorable but loud children), I wore everything but the shirt, which should be understandable.
Let me clarify that I was by no means in the running for the Most Skin Showing award. It's a holiday weekend, which means lots of people. Lots of shorts. Lots of bathing suits. And I swear I saw a miniskirt (which, in the woods, just kinda makes you go bwuh?). But it should be clear that I'm more covered up than the majority of these people.
So I'm walking back, right? I see these people coming the other way - a group of a couple families, with two sets of parents each walking a dog, and three boys of approximately 10 years of age following a little ways behind. I say hello to the parents, let the dogs sniff me and smile at the boys as I go past. And then I hear, in a low tone that is pure holy-shit-you-guys-someone-pinch-me, the following:
"I just saw. A naked woman. Walk past me."
Oh, little anonymous boy in the woods. I'm not sure whether to congratulate you on your admirable imagination, ask you how I can get my own pair of x-ray contacts, or just call you a creeper.
In other news: OH MY GOD YOU GUYS THE MAN IS FINALLY IN THIS STATE!!! He and his fam went straight to his aunt's house down south a ways, but he is LESS THAN 100 MILES FROM ME!!! I'm making a list of all the fun Triangle-based activities I'm looking forward to sharing with him and his family:
- go to the Eno to hike and swim and catch tiny toads and then let them go again
- and also to go kayaking
- and probably camping at some point
- toss paleo to the winds and take them for lunch at Cosmic Cantina, with dessert at Locopops
- catch some music downtown at Motorco on a night when all the food trucks are there so we can get tater tots fried in duck fat
- stroll around Duke Gardens
- head over to Chapel Hill to see the always jaw-dropping Paperhand Puppet Intervention, if we can schedule it soon enough