Sometimes I’m surprised I survived to see adulthood. I think that about a lot of kids actually, especially after seeing Youtube fail compilations.
The following is a true story. There was a large river near our house when I was in high school. Parts of it went through a high gorge just below the big waterfall our town was named after. I would go down and climb on the rocks by the water and have a great time. One time, I decided to climb up the cliff face right under the bridge that went across the gorge. It was over sixty feet high and I didn’t have any ropes, but I was a good climber, and if there is anything teenagers have, it’s recklessness confidence.
I got about two thirds of the way up and ran into trouble. The rock became friable, breaking off in my hand. There were no solid handholds. I couldn’t go back down and directly below me were sharp rocks and the fast, swirling water of the river. Also, no one knew where I was. I started praying hard for God to get me out of there safely.
There were obviously guardian angels clocking some overtime, because I managed to get around the hard area and get up to the top. I’d like to say I learned something from the experience and maybe I did, but what I should have known was this was not something to tell my mother. This is the sort of thing that gives mothers (and later, wives) heart attacks.
So, later that evening: “Guess what, Mom? I almost died today.”
What a bad son.