“Hit it”, I yelled. Out of the water I popped, just like a pro. I was gliding along when I felt the sprinkles on my face. No problem, a few sprinkles never hurt anyone. Suddenly those sprinkles became a fierce downpour. Unable to keep my eyes open because of the pelting rain, I released my right hand to shield my eyes and held on tightly to the handle with my left hand, all the while my Cheshire grin never leaving my face. I didn’t want to let go because I didn’t want this ride to end. The wake got the best of me as I lost my balance and fell into the water. I reluctantly climbed into the boat praying for the rain to go away. Well, it just so happens that in Tennessee if you move a few feet in another direction you’ll be out of the rain. So we rode across the lake half a mile in the other direction and came upon blue skies and calm waters. Once again I jumped into the water, put on my skis and went for another ride. I considered slalom skiing but it had been over twenty six years since the last time I had skied. Boy was I glad that I had been diligent for the past three weeks doing my yoga and workouts. As I glided back to the dock my children’s faces showed signs of relief. I think they had visions of their mother on a kamikaze death ride never to return in one piece but I made it back safely.
It is amazing just how hungry you get from skiing. I went up to the lake house where my daughter had grilled some hamburgers (organic, of course). With my blackberry Izze in one hand and a plate with my grilled burger and some tabouli that I had made the day before (no genetically modified foods for me, thank you very much) in the other, I prepared to sit down and relax the rest of the day. I thought my day had been complete. Then, I overheard someone say cliff jumping. My ears perked up. I looked at my pastor and said, “Did you say cliff jumping”? He nodded his head and asked if I wanted to go. Heck yes! I gobbled down some food, ran inside and put my bathing suit back on.
The ride to the cliffs was about a 10 minute boat ride which was so relaxing and enjoyable. When we got to the cliffs I jumped out of the boat and looked up to observe someone taking their leap of faith. No problem, I thought, I can do this. Unbeknownst to me, not only were we going to cliff jump but we had to rock climb to get to the ledge. My arms were a bit shaky from the exertion of water skiing but I was bound and determined to get up to the top. My son was ahead of me climbing gingerly up the mountain (he’s afraid of heights). I was so proud of him for conquering this fear. I was right behind him looking for something to grab onto to propel me further while looking out for poison ivy on the cliff side. I am highly allergic to poison ivy.
Let me tell you that looking up at the cliff while in the water is a lot different from looking down at the water from the cliff’s edge. I am not afraid of heights but I am afraid of shallow waters. However, since I had seen several others before me jump and resurface, my son being one of them, I figured it was a low risk. Not only that, but the owner of the boat had a depth finder and his registered at over 75 feet. The odds were in my favor. Hanging precariously at the cliff’s edge, this time my children were cheering me on instead of begging me to stop, I jumped off. I screamed all the way down. But this scream was a victorious one. What a blast. Once wasn’t enough so I had to go back and do it again.
We got home at 9:30 that night. My kids clamored to be first in the shower. I told my son that it’s girls first. He really doesn’t like that rule since he is the only guy in the house. With the two youngest kids in bed, I poured myself a glass of red wine and sat in my rocker on my front porch reliving the events of the day. I hadn’t had that much fun in years. Oh, I knew that my body would be stiff and sore the next day but I would just consider it a reminder of a perfectly wonderful, adventurous day.