Wednesday, August 28, 2013
Strong Currents Beneath
A young boy of about twelve years of age I stood on the bank of a river with my parents and commented about how easy it would be to swim to the other side. My parents adamantly informed me that although the river looked calm at the top there were strong currents moving below its surface. I was reminded of this as I took a walk through our local preserve today. Sunday Morongo valley had been hit by a flash flood. The wooden walkway through the preserve was covered with mud. Waterways alongside the walk were now deeply rutted and the ferns which grew straight and tall were gone or flattened. What power there is in moving water!
While hiking in the Grand Canyon in 2012 we were told by a volunteer that they had just fished out the bodies of two Boy Scouts that were playing near the river; a third death of an adult that tried to save them was also reported. I came across the tragic story of Kaitlin Kenney, a 21 year old Colorado woman that was an accomplished fiddler (Colorado Sate Teen Champion) and lover of the outdoors, “friends told investigators that they shared whiskey with a passing group who visited them at their campsite while kayaking. In the days leading up to her disappearance on the night of January 11, Kenney had eaten some of the hallucinogenic mushrooms that she brought with her, but their effects would have likely worn off by the time she walked away from the campfire that fateful night.” There is some doubt as to the mushrooms but an autopsy revealed a significantly high blood-alcohol level. Newspaper stories speculate that she may have got up in the night and fallen into the river.
On every internet news page I pulled up there was a picture of Miley Cyrus on the sidebar. Brant Hansen has a great blog post where he apologized to her on behalf of all adults.
Life looks safe but there can be savage undercurrents that are not initially visible. On occasion the raging waters just suck us out into their vortex. More often than not we fail to heed the warnings from parents, friends and counselors to be careful. “Guard your heart with all diligence,” says the Teacher, “for from it flow the waters of life.”