Today is the one year anniversary of my brother's death. I miss him.
I thought I'd take a second to relate one of my favorite memories of him.
As I mentioned in a previous entry, we didn't have a swimming pool when I was growing up. And believe it or not, Pennsylvania gets pretty darn hot (and humid!) during the summer months. So, we'd play in the hose, make a slip and slide out of some of my dad's plastic sheeting, and invariably we would go to Otter Creek at least a couple of times every summer. This wonderful tributary of the Susquehanna River is a mostly shallow, rather swiftly moving creek. For the better part of the creek, the water isn't deeper than your knees.
(A thank you to my sister Jenny, who sent me this picture that I took with HER point and shoot camera when I was at home.)
But there are a few spots, where there are drop-offs and waterfalls and even a great little swimming hole with an area about 12 feet deep. I was never really brave enough to jump off the tall (10 feet?) rocks into the deep water. But one summer, I did manage to be convinced to slide down the 6 foot waterfall. You simply climbed around (on land) to the top, waded out to the waterfall, and sat down. Slip, slide, woot! The waterfall would push you under and out and you'd swim to the side, where you'd climb up and do it all over again.
Well, this particular summer, I was probably about 13, and David was maybe 15. So, waterfall sliding we went. I remember doing it about two or three times. Man... it was fun! Finally, it was my turn again. Slip, slide... oops. Instead of the waterfall pushing me under and out, it just pushed me under. As hard as I tried, it kept sucking me back in and under. I was barely able to keep my head afloat for long enough to get a breath. My brother, David, having just gone before me, had already swam to the side.
I was scared. My mom, seeing that I was struggling made the attempt to swim to me. However, the current from the waterfall was too strong. Quickly, my brother David, jumped back in the water, and swam his hardest into the waterfall to pull me out.
I like to think he saved my life. It sure felt like it. Wish I could have done the same for him.
I miss him.