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Autobiography - Cautious exploration.

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Autobiography Cautious exploration We were down bound, devoid of any sense of judgment. We could see the river overflowing with colossal force; the mass of murky brown water rushed down towards the waterfall. There had been an unyielding downpour of rain lasting the best part of three days; this was unusual for the midsummer months. Neil, my best friend and contemporary, thought nothing less than to go ahead as planned, he believed our normal excursion would be even better today. Paul and Steve were at the age of 16, a few years older than us, and showed more self-restraint at the idea. We made our way over the stiles, along a narrow dusty red path, which lay above a natural body of running water. The distinct smell of wild river plants lingered up our nostrils. ...read more.


We had all done this before. The first person who tried it, I will admit, must have been crazy, for he did not know whether there were rocks under the river, or whether or not the water was sufficiently deep enough for him to land in, as the fall was over 10 foot. There was a slight opening through the bushes with a sloping little path. I ventured down, and there it was, a concrete ledge perfectly poised on the edge of the bank overlooking the top of the waterfall. The current was so furious that the water was nearly bursting its own banks. I looked at it in amazement but I thought jumping today was not a good idea. We made our way down to the bottom bank for a better view, where we could see the full breadth and length of the waterfall. ...read more.


I frantically tried to break a large branch off a nearby tree but my actions were in vain. Paul was now in a life threatening position because he was attempting to save Neil. All of a sudden Neil broke free through a whirling current and then emerged, slumped on the side banking, gasping for air. Paul was still underneath but then appeared momentarily after Neil through the same flow of water. They both looked a mess, slouched on the rock in the realization that they nearly lost their lives. Neil told me that whilst he was being thrown about under the water, he thought he was going to die, having flash thoughts of his family and even his pet dog, and thinking that he would be in all the newspapers, which would be reporting his death. Neil thinks that it was Paul's head that gave him the leverage to push himself out. ...read more.

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