So last week we took a day trip to the Lake at Mt. Gretna. The girls and I met my parents and my niece and nephew. My father is a HUGE fresh water enthusiast who is surrounded by a family of beach lovers. Which of course means that his chance to swim in a lake is pretty infrequent. None of us had ever been to Mt. Gretna, but we were excited by what we read about it. And it was great - a shallow roped off area for the little ones, docks to dive off, this incredible trapeze swing to jump into the water with, and a really high dive to also jump off. So much fun! My father has fond memories of jumping off cliffs into rivers and doing other "dare devil" activities. So within just a few minutes of being there, he was chasing after my 9 year old niece and 11 year old nephew. He did a quick jump off the high dive and then he was off to the trapeze swing. As I watched him in line for the swing, I remarked to my Mother "look at Dad, he's the only adult there. Good for him". Uh yeah, maybe there was a reason for that. As he hobbled out of the water, clutching his stomach, we were definitely worried. He couldn't believe the pain he was in - said something in his stomach "popped". Yep, after just 15 minutes of fun, my Pop was out of commission for the rest of the day. The next couple of days brought on MRI's, ultrasounds and trips to surgeons. Did you know that you could actually rupture a muscle? That's what he did. Crazy stuff. He'll be out of commission for a couple of weeks now.
So the rest of us continued to have a good time while my Pop watched. We rented these great inner tubes and floated around. But my niece seemed a little disappointed. She wanted someone to play with her. She kept bugging me to go off the high dive with her. I kept saying no,and no and oh yeah, no again. But then I saw some older (than me) ladies doing it, and so I started wavering. It would be fun to be the cool Aunt that went and had a good time with her niece. Well, I guess I'll do it.
Ummmmm.... Did I ever mention to you my fear of heights? Yeah. As I was climbing up the very slippery ladder, I kept telling myself "don't look down". I was horrified. And once I got to the top, do you know what my sweet niece did? She baled on me! Just jumped! That was it, she was gone. Floating in her inner tube and smiling up at me. So there I was, on this little platform, up at least a gazillion miles in the air, and surrounded by a bunch of 11 year olds. I kept walking to the jump off point and freezing. I. CAN'T. DO. THIS. The sweet girls kept telling me it really wasn't that bad. The boys kepts saying just do it! 5 separate times I tried to jump. I couldn't do it. I needed to close my eyes to do it. But then I was afraid I wouldn't clear the metal contraption that was holding us up. I needed to keep my eyes open. But I COULDN'T DO IT! The girls told me I had to, informed me that someone broke their leg climbing down the slippery assed ladder. I could believe it. That seemed just as treacherous as jumping. But I JUST COULDN'T DO IT.
The kids were getting more pushy - just do it! But I couldn't. I looked to the shore, my parents were there, watching. Pop had the camera all ready to go. Mom was cheering me on. My girls were looking at their role model with great expectation in their eyes. But, I JUST COULDN'T DO IT. The lifeguard kept giving me these looks like what the hell are you doing up there, old lady? Oh god, I was old. I was the old, chubby scared, lady at the lake. The humiliation.
The lifeguard finally told me to just go down the ladder. He had to whistle and yell at the kids below to clear the ladder so the old, chubby, scared lady could get down. I'm almost certain that's what he said.
And so, scared to death, I descended down the ladder. To great cheers from above. No, ok, actually not cheers. The noise, in fact kind of went like this "bawk, bawk, bawk" THEY WERE CLUCKING AT ME! Oh my god! The 11 year old punks were calling me chicken!
Yep, push that up to number 1 on my most embarrassing moments list.