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Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Go Jump in the River

T shouldn’t have even brought it up, but it was too late now, he could see that.

In his mind’s eye, Kevin was already jumping.

Kevin pulled over and put it in “park” on the side of the highway. Early afternoon on a bright summer day, there wasn’t much traffic.

T looked at him.

“Well?” Kevin said, “We jumpin’ or what?”

T looked out his passenger window, out over the St. Croix River, the natural border between eastern Minnesota and western Wisconsin.

The jump into the St. Croix River – just outside of Taylor’s Falls – was on the Wisconsin side.

Their work van was now on the side of the road in Minnesota.

“It’s over there,” T offered.

“What am I, made of money? They charge $3 for parking over there!”

“So what, we’re gonna walk?”

Kevin opened the driver’s door.

“No,” he said, grinning. “We’re gonna swim.”

He slammed the door.

The jump off the cliff at Taylor’s Falls is, according to my brother Kevin, 59 feet and four inches. You must jump at least 15 feet out and away in order to clear the granite ledge, just two feet under the water’s surface.

Kevin is a man of experience and strange nunchuk ways. I never question his sources.

Five minutes later, bare-chested, their shirts folded and placed atop their shoes, they stood on the edge of the St. Croix.

“You first,” Kevin said.

And he pushed T into the water.

In hindsight, of course, the current of the river should’ve been taken into account.

Because it’s hard to swim straight across a river.

The story of The Swimming is best heard from the source. It involves wild gesticulation, shivering, and a graphic description – including a fascinatingly inappropriate visual aid – regarding the surprising difference between air temperature and the temperature of a rapidly flowing river.

So we’ll skip over that.

They swam. They jumped. And they lived.

And they were much more tired on the swim back to the van than on the original trip.

But this time, they took into consideration the current.

30 comments:

Shelly said...

Brave souls, Kevin and T. Did you at some point swim and jump with them? I'd be having to wave from the shore...

Pearl said...

"Brave" might be one way to describe them! And no -- although I did once make the same jump, but not to swim across!

jabblog said...

Dangerous pursuits . . .

joeh said...

Dumb and dumber

Douglas said...

Please, please, tell me it wasn't winter or early spring.

jenny_o said...

I'd have to stand with Shelly and wave ... large bodies of water and I do not mingle well. Heck, anything larger than a bathtub finds me standing a respectful distance away.

My mother had a saying for people who did foolish things - "more money than brains". As they were generally not rich, it was a double ouch description.

fishducky said...

As joeh said...Dumb and dumber, &, if I may add--EVEN DUMBER!!

Yamini MacLean said...

Hari OM
...oh this could have been such a different story. I'm glad for the one it became... 8~| YAMxx

Yamini MacLean said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Geo. said...

St. Croix, French for Holy Cross --which is close to something I might scream during a 60-foot dive. A beautifully constructed baptismal account, Pearl. It has suspense and depth.

Joanne Noragon said...

What guys. What a story. Hey, three bucks bought a lot of gas back then. and a carton of smokes.
There should be a blog site just for our brothers' stories. Exciting thought. But our blogs are good, too.

Indigo Roth said...

Hey Pearl! Let's be clear: boys are not brave, they're stupid. But still, as a girl you were a little bit impressed by their heroics, I know =) Indigo x

Gigi said...

Boys...no matter how old they get they still do dumb stuff.

Sioux said...

Two boys...Put them together and they don't always make the wisest decisions...

HermanTurnip said...

Great story! Had so much fun reading it I was begging for more.

Susan Flett Swiderski said...

HA! Live and learn, eh? And they're mighty lucky to still be alive so they could learn.

Daisy said...

That made me wonder what was on the other side that was important enough to take the risk of that jump and swim!

Jo-Anne Meadows said...

Swimming in a lake no bloody way......lol

Bossy Betty said...

Oh boy. This reminds me of something I fear my son's friends would do.

Elephant's Child said...

Brothers seem to be much the same the world over. Great story - and I am glad it was a happy one.

River said...

Boys. They're a strange species.

Tez said...

Loved this story; I almost felt the adrenalin rush of the jump.

Not sure this is just about the weird behaviour of boys. If I had been with them, in my younger days, I would have jumped too. I sure had some awesome adventures and I bet your brother and friend will have some great memories too.

Kymbo Whitford said...

Silly Buggers..
Another great story well told Pearl.

Pat said...

So what shall we do about Kevin?

Rosemary Nickerson said...

it constantly amazes me that enough human males survive to continually populate the earth!
Rosemary

Eva Gallant said...

Sounds like something guys would do!

BLissed-Out Grandma said...

Um, yeah. They don't jump IN SPITE of the danger, they jump because of it. And it scares the bejeebers out of me, 'cause that is one nasty cliff including the underwater part. And that "more money than brains" saying? I prefer "more dollars than sense."

TexWisGirl said...

amazing that we can survive our own stupidity. :)

Pat Tillett said...

Decades ago, I'd have been right there with them. What has happened to me?
Good one Pearl!

Joan said...

Oh my, I remember jumping once too. Eons ago. I don't even remember where it was. Guess I erased it from my mind. lol