Ever tried climbing up one of those manufactured rock-climbing walls? I never have until yesterday.

I serve on our regional Parkboard, and although I’m not really into golf or softball or tennis, I am kind of a cheerleader for alternative things in our parks, like the skatepark, the dog park, and now the rock-climbing wall.

Yesterday I got a fax of the agenda for the ribbon-cutting ceremony, and when I got to the part that said, “then Pam climbs up the wall to cut the ribbon,” I thought I better get to the gym and practice.

With the help of a couple of kids working at the gym, after six tries I got halfway to the top. The hard part isn’t the climbing, the hard part is I’m afraid of heights.

I was the kid who was scared jumping off the high-dive. The second time I tried, I was terrified. The third time, my swimsuit dried in the sun, and I had to push the other kids off the ladder to get back down to ground level.

My only other significant jump from a high place was at my wedding. Russ, being the eccentric romantic that he is, had proposed to me as he was jumping from a cliff at Tablerock Lake. This cliff is called Battleship Rock and it can be 20-25 feet from the water depending on the lake levels.

So we decided to get married on that cliff, and our friends and family could attend the wedding in a small fleet of pontoon boats. I hadn’t planned on jumping off the cliff, but standing on hot rock in the June sun in a full wedding dress for 45 minutes waiting for a flock of pontoon boats can really change how you think about things.

After about 15 minutes the water below started to look really nice, and after about 30 minutes, I was glad I had put a swimsuit on under the wedding dress, just in case…(and here, something borrowed, something blue had a special meaning.)

By the time our short ceremony was over, I was really ready to peel off the wedding dress. I still hesitated at the cliff edge, but Russ grabbed my hand, and together we took the plunge.

Every anniversary for the last 15 years he asks me if I’m going to jump again. I always say, maybe next year. But tonight, I did go back to the rock wall and this time I got to the top THREE times!

Which reminds me, someday I’d like to do a wedding quilt. There’s all kinds of funny stuff I could put in the background, like the Celtic band on a slowly sinking hand-made raft, the surprised look on the summer kids just out for swim, my nephew on a rock ledge singing an acappella wedding song…

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