"Who's up for Rock hopping?" I heard Mr Ford yell out.
I looked up and away into the distance of the waterfall called Bridal Veil. We were downstream of the river looking back. The water level wasn't very high and boulders and small rocks scattered along the river gave the feeling that it would be easy to jump, walk, and climb over them, heading back up river and to the other side.
'Hmmm, why not. I need to challenge myself and get out of my comfort zone.' I thought.
Excitedly, nervously, maybe even foolishly I didn't know which emotion was the strongest, I gave over my cell phone, watch and a mountaineer walking pole I had been using for going uphill to Mr Ford's wife, Anne.
Five of us, Mr Ford, Mrs Love, Mr Love, Mrs Frewin and I picked our way down over the first lot of rocks. Almost immediately, Mr Ford slipped on a rock. It made us hesitate and wonder if it was such a good idea after all as our shoes might not be up to the job of standing on slippery rocks. After a couple of minutes, we decided to press on.
Well, Mrs Love was the second person to slip and fall in up to her waist! It was cold and she was wet but it didn't stop us. I was the next person to slip as I jumped onto a rock. Luckily, the water wasn't too deep where I fell in. Oh well, that's over, I thought, the challenge of not falling in and keeping dry. Now I can just get on with the job of making it upstream and to the other side of the river.
It was hard work I tell you. My short legs in some places couldn't quite get me up onto some high boulders and Mr Love had to pull me up in some places.
We had to look carefully at the rocks and boulders to make a decision as to where to get a good footing and hand grip to pull ourselves up, round and over. I thought about those extreme rock climbers who climb up sheer rock faces with just their hands and feet finding holds in the rock to cling on to.
We finally made it to the place where there was a track on the other side and Miss Hill, Mr Gifkins, Mrs Gifkins, Mrs Hardaker, Mrs Ford, Nina and Charlie were waiting for us. They had walked up the other side and onto the bridge over the waterfall to the side we where now on.
They congratulated us on making it and we continued up the track...uphill I might add. I was sure glad to have that mountaineer walking pole. My pants were wet and heavy as were my socks and shoes but I just had to keep going. Nina danced just ahead of me, enjoying the walking track. Oh to be young and springy again, I thought.
Nevermind, the old legs and body did a good job rock hopping today, I thought. I'll pay for it tomorrow though, I laughed to myself as I rubbed the side of my leg.