Saturday, May 31, 2008

the white cliffs of dover

There'll be bluebirds over
The white cliffs of Dover,
Tomorrow, just you wait and see.

I'll never forget the people I met
braving those angry sky's
I remember well as the shadows fell
the light of hope in thier eyes
and though I'm far away I still can hear them say
Sun's up for when the dawn comes up

There'll be bluebirds over
The white cliffs of Dover,
Tomorrow, just you wait and see.

There'll be love and laughter
And peace ever after.
Tomorrow, when the world is free

The shepherd will tend his sheep.
The valley will bloom again.
And Jimmy will go to sleep
In his own little room again.

There'll be bluebirds over
The white cliffs of Dover,
Tomorrow, just you wait and see.

*** lyrics by Vera Lynn


You know those stories about photographers going the extra mile and sometimes even risking their own lives just to get that one shot. I did just that last weekend. But only because of stupidity.

It was a good day. And although the weather forecasts said otherwise, it didn't rain. Ketty and Eric came down to visit me here in the garden of England (Kent) since it's a bank holiday weekend. And the three of us decided to go to the English coast last Saturday to view the famed white cliffs. The views were indeed spectacular! The cliffs were breathtaking. More so because it was so high, that when we were finally there, I was shit scared. Y'all know about my acrophobia, don't you? If not, well I have a serious one. And just by talking about heights, it makes me cringe.

And so we were on top of that friggin' hill. There were a number of trails which we all assumed will lead us to a much higher ground to get an even more spectacular view of the cliffs. I found one and being the self appointed leader of us three, I led the way. The trail is a small one (not more than 2 feet wide) and took us to a lot of twists and turns and ups and downs. There were times when we were so close to the edge of the hill that Ketty commented, how scary it was and that we should go back. I dismissed it and assured her that we were close to the top and that I couldn't see anymore drops. Or so I thought. Yeah, we were definitely near to the top but before we can get there, we had to climb a steep hill. It wasn't that high, maybe about 10 feet but it was so steep, you had to climb it like it was wall. Think of Ethan Hunt and the Grand Canyon, better yet, think of Spider Man. But that's not the worst part, it was so close to the edge of the cliff, one wrong step will definitely make you plunge to your death, at least 50 feet below. You'd think that those people who made those stupid trails would put up barriers for safety reasons but NO! They will let you die because you're an idiot for following their stupid path.

Anyway, when I saw the steep hill, I stopped and stood still. I grabbed the grass with my both hands and said to Ketty, "I don't think we can make it. Mc, I won't make it!" My knees began to wobble and fear covered my whole body. For a few moments a vision flashed before my eyes. A picture of three Pinoys holding on to the grass, shrubs and vines, dangling on the side of the cliff and with helicopters hovering above us. Rescuers yelling at us to hold on. It was a terrible and embarassing picture.

I took a deep breath. Asked the others that we need to go back. Slowly, we made our way back into flat ground. We did this without talking. It was Ketty who said something first. It was to scold me. I knew I should've listened to her. When we were finally on the safe ground, we started laughing about our misfortune.

I don't know who found a much safer trail to the spot where I took that picture. But despite the near death experience, it was definitely worth it.


rehabman said...

Tsk tsk tsk. Take it as a lesson Jay. Sometimes, we need to listen to somebody else not only because they know better but because for some reasons we will soon learn. Listening won't hurt you at all naman. Glad to know you, ketty & your friend managed to escape the cliff without serious injuries. Be safe.

kikomeister said...

opo, opo.