Tag Archives: river

Things Never to Tell Your Mother

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.

The actual river, just down from where I climbed up.

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.


When Life Intervenes (aka “Where’s Isabelle”?)

Tragic news, everyone. Part 4 of Isabelle’s Story is not ready yet, even though I said it would be up today. The good news is that it should be ready tomorrow. I really try to post things when I say I will, but as the title says, life intervenes sometimes.

In this case, I went rafting today with my friend. It was kind of a last minute thing, but if you know me in real life, you’ll know I’m adventurous and spontaneous. If you don’t know me in real life, well, now you know.

The river is known as the Mangyeonggang, which is practically unpronounceable when written in English. In Korean, it’s 만경강. I didn’t take any pictures, since I didn’t want to get the camera wet or damaged but here is a picture of the river by someone else.

As you can see, there are large masses of vegetation, as well as frequent breakwaters built across the river to slow the water down in the rainy seasons. We had to portage around four of those, but on the other side of them, the water was fast and went through corridors of tall grass and reeds, often in convoluted S-shapes. It was very fun. Here’s an aerial picture.

So that’s why the story isn’t ready. Unless I go sky-diving tomorrow, it should be up then. (In the meantime, you can catch up with the first story, Isabelle’s Island, or Part 1, Part 2, or Part 3 of The Other Side: Isabelle’s Story, if you haven’t read them yet.)

In the spirit of sharing, what are some times when life intervened on your scheduled writing?


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