Stop! … Stop!

Far shoreline of lakeWhen you blink your eyes, you never know what you’ll see next. I can attest. Once I was with friends, driving to see the spring jonquils at Wye Mountain. Margery was the driver and I sat beside her in the front seat. The whole group of us had stayed up late the night before, visiting, and I was so tired I could hardly keep my eyes open. In fact, I let my eyelids fall… and close… for a second… or two. When I opened them, the road had shiftedastounding!—and we were driving down the wrong side of it!  Margery’s eyes had closed in tandem with mine; we had both blinked. And the world could have changed much more dramatically than it did. I’ve told you that story as a lead-in to sharing what just happened at the local boat ramp. Don’t worry, nobody got hurt..

But first! Another story applies… a joke, actually. Back when times were more peaceable in Britain—and maybe still now—the London bobbies carried no guns. So if one happened to notice a thief making a getaway, all he could do was yell “Stop! … or I’ll yell ‘Stop!’ again!”

Twin stop signs at flooded lakeA parallel ineffectiveness was obtained yesterday by the twin inundated traffic signs at the nearby boat ramp where Arkansas Highway 264 slopes down into Beaver Lake…

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Today the lake water had risen above the approaching road at a dip where I’d seen a heron two days prior. Logs, branches, leaves, foam, and other debris lined the lake edge… as did fishermen and their families. As I walked through this area, my eyes were caught by the people, the debris, the road, and the water. But when I glanced further up the road, I could only blink… and blink again. Signs or no signs, there had been no stopping this enormous item of debris:

Boat ramp dock My first thought was “What fast builders that Corps of Engineers is!”  [Not grammatical, but true.]  My second thought was, “What the heck! Who did build this in a day?” A fisher-wife knew the facts: the dock had blown in with a storm. Its owner had found it and was figuring out what to do next.

Boat ramp dogsI wasn’t the only one enjoying high-water adventures at the lake. Along with the influx of happy fishing families, a pair of dogs had shown up, greeting people and herding vehicle drivers. Not far away, a car was parked off to the side. Beside it, four names were scrawled in the gravel; I could make out three: “Mary, Skipper, and Oscar.”

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For me, part of the adventure was initiating my newly-acquired hiking boots to walking through ankle-high water. I was relieved to find they kept my feet completely dry, but I wouldn’t have regretted the fun of splashing anyway. Plus, just think—more adventures await. You never know what you’ll see next when you blink!  ♥ ~Jo

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Photo Credits: All by Jo Lightfoot

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