The river is brown and swollen, and the pool looks different from last week when it was smooth and still. Today I sense the latent energy of a coiled snake, making me slightly apprehensive. We scramble down the bank and are enveloped by the scent of wild garlic so pungent I can taste it. Slipping on pebbles, we wade in and float upstream, in a womb of arching boughs birthing tiny, frilled leaves.
As we circle round, the downstream current picks us up and spins us briefly on the spot. I swoop round and then swim forwards, but travel sideways. Earlier we’d discussed our failure to remove our leg-hair, and I feel mine being ruffled beneath the surface by watery hands. Above the rapids whirls a pool of midges.