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Friday, August 28, 2015

Make a Choice

           The July sunshine was high in the sky on that hot summer day, the clear blue sky found me sitting on the sandy river bank on a small island out from the main green belt of activities. The rushing river ran by us from one side of the bushes and trees while on the swallow side was calming as we sang.
I had been looking forward to just sitting on the towel in the sun and shade while watching the kids play. This was a perfect day for all of us to simply be together. My beloved friend Tiffany took her 6 year old boy off to find some fish while I stayed at our picnic spot with her other 3 kids. We sang silly songs, floated wild flowers among the wet rocks and simply enjoyed all the nature surrounding us. 
It was simply magical!
Tiffany and I had been sitting together drinking our bottles of water in the strong heat of the afternoon while laughing and reminiscing over all of our adventures growing up playing on that very same river. 
While the beautiful afternoon unfolded in perfect peacefulness the kids and I sang all kinds of silly songs, Tiffany's 9 year old daughter Tally sat beside me talking about all the wild life we could see all around us. The world felt perfectly calm and peaceful then suddenly It was all interrupted by the shouting of the river rafters that went floating by I suddenly heard "Oh my god there's a dog stuck out here under the bridge!" Tally and I jumped to our feet in alarm, Tally asked me "Dog? What dog?" I looked around quickly trying to see out into the dark part of the river before us as Ethan, Tiffany's 12 year old son raced up to us pointing out the dog in the white water waves I asked Ethan "Is he swimming back to us?" Ethan shook his head "Noooo I think he is stuck in place." I began to move out into the river as Tally clanged me saying "No no no no don't go out there it's to dangerous!" I chuckled at her theatrics reassuring her that I will be safe. Ethan and I walked out to as far as we could  in the swallow area first to see if the dog would come to us as we called to it but I looked in careful realizing the dog was getting beat up by all the crazy waves. I stood next to Ethan saying "I'm going in." Ethan exclaimed "Wait for my mom to get back first, seriously that's a deep dark area that she always warns us never to go over we should ask her first." I nodded and smiled as I patted him on the back "Go back and stay with the girls, there isn't much time to wait, the poor dog is drowning." Tally called out from the river side "Debby I love you!" I chuckled as I went carefully and slowly feeling my way with my feet and calling out to the big old dog that was choking on the water and still stuck in a swirling mess of water and the cement pillar holding up the bridge above us. The dog's eyes were wide and pure panic as I came up the swallow side unto the deep dark cliff side of rushing heavy river water. I couldn't see in the shadows of the bridge or in the water all around us,  I found the trunk of a tree under the water that pop out for me to hang on as the closer I got the the terrified dog the more dangerous the fast pace water splashed in my face! I was startled by the strength of the fast pace moving river so without warning my feet slipped into nothingness and my heart stopped for a moment, I dug myself into the root system even more to keep my head above the waves. My feet reached for the cliff side under the dark scary water and I found some safety in feeling strong enough to reach out to the dog "Come on Buddy just a little closer to me sweetie, Come on, come on,  ...I just need to pull ya in to me." I felt like I was being pushed and pulled then spun around in circle against the cement wall of the huge bridge but I never let go of that tree with one arm, my heart was racing and the growing awareness that the dog was tired of swimming and fighting to get out of this water pit made me realize every single move I made had to count for something! When the dog disappeared under the water for a second I almost cried out but knew I would swallow water as I let myself pull under to feel for the dog if I wasn't careful I could be swept away, The sudden thought of "It's NOW or never!" came to me as the dog popped up through the water again I swung out there into the chaos stretching myself as much as possible never letting go of the root system and barely got my fingers into the dog collar! I gave it my all in pulling him quickly over my shoulders to the safer side of the river up on the cliff side where there was ground again for the dog to stand. Then I climbed out of the wild crazy water waves right behind the dog. I carefully made my way back to land soaked from my ears down saying "YEAH! YIPPY! WE LIVED!" The kids all laughed and cheered while the owner of the dog seemed fragile and frighten. Tiffany was walking out to me like a mother ready to scold her reckless child. I just took a deep sigh explaining to her "Well this is ironic for ya, the kids wanted me to get in the river all afternoon and I was like "Oh no, that's okay I don't want  to  get wet......then someone yells "That dog is drowning!" and I am like SPLASH! swimming out to save him...hahahahaha..ha..ha..ha..sigh." She shook her head explaining "You were in the most dangerous part! That's the black hole! If some old dog gets stuck out there and you get suck under you would of drowned and I would of been so mad at how ridiculous it is to loose your life for a strange dog." I smiled back at her explaining "I had a choice to make, I only had a few minuets to decide what to do next and I knew I could do this, I knew that I am strong enough to put myself out there for this dog, you saw his owner was helpless so I realized I could at least try to save the dog and if it wasn't possible at least I chose to give it my best. Oooooh man, I was startled a couple of times thinking "What if I get pulled under the waves and never come back up.....?" Tiffany burst out interrupting me "That is exactly what I am saying! In that very spot where you were the water comes in to it in 3 different WILL sucks you down into a deep dark cliff side...I should show you in the winter time when the water is down. You would see why I am so upset right now, when the kids told me you were out there I nearly had a heart attack!" I nodded back saying "Yes but I knew what I was doing every step of the way, I even thought that if I can't reach the dog in time then I have to be okay with letting the river win. It's just that I had this confidence I could do this and I should do this....What a crazy end to our beautiful day! Look at me I am soaked through!" I giggled and Tiffany shook her head at me as we walked back to her kids, back to the dry land and grateful for the warm summer sunshine adding once again another big adventure in our life long friendship!

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