Hi, my name is Breanna and I’m an American student studying at EBS until January.
A few months ago, if you would have asked me what I expected from my stay in Estonia I probably would have said, some snow, lots of rye bread and potatoes, and Russian accents. Never, and I repeat never would I have expected that part of my Erasmus would include voluntarily running half naked into the Baltic sea in freezing temperatures. But so it be, myself and a group of EBSters were crazy enough to brave the cold waters.
We all gathered, excited and scared to death, on the Baltic shore line right before noon. Dressed in our warmest winter gear we weren’t too rushed to change into our bathing suits. As soon as the crazy kicked in, about 20 of us were standing half naked on the shore line, looking at the dark water with trepidation.
Before actually braving the cold waters, we contributed to the social media craze with our own “Baltic sea swim mannequin challenge”, which was rather painful to shoot actually, but worth it.
Soon after, we took a deep breath and ran for the water. Any bystanders probably heard an array of swear words in all different languages. Vocab becomes rather limited when you’re swimming in water that’s only 3℃.
Luckily for us we had a portable sauna at our disposition, that we all gladly stuffed into at once. Additionally we had hot tea on site to make the experience that much better.
Overall the experience was definitely unique, but I wouldn’t have missed it for the world! A Baltic Swim in the winter should definitely go on your bucket list!
Author: Breanna Sandquist
Photos: Vanessa Yasmine Birgitta Roosmets
Editor: Kärt Mättikas