Thứ Bảy, 31 tháng 7, 2010



Could I ever forget standing on a bouncing boat deck within a stone's throw of the mighty Niagara Falls as it plunged onto the rocks ahead of our seemingly flimsy craft? NO, NEVER.

As we approached what must be one of the wonders of the world, I clutched at my billowing blue plastic rain cape and tried to drag the hood, streaming with water, over my head. In a vain attempt to prevent further water gushing down the front of my blouse and into my bra, I squeezed the plastic together around my neck. My shoes were filled with water. Each time I moved my feet there was a loud sucking squelch. Hair, like sodden rats tails whipped around my face. It was like being out in a blustering gale with a violent rainstorm in progress.

Ahead of me, all I could see was a sheet of white foaming water. Just inches from my face a vaporous mass rose eerily from the foot of the Falls. Swirling churning waves crashed around our little boat as we approached ever closer. The booming roar of sound was deafening.Then suddenly, out of the whirling maelstrom of water and mist, our guide's voice, like a pronouncement from the underworld - he was using a loudspeaker for there would be no other way to hear him - boomed out across our heads. “LADIES AND GENTLEMEN, WITNESS THE NIAGARA FALLS.

For a moment, we the humbled onlookers were struck silent by the imminent death-dealing vision that confronted us. And then, when it seemed that we were headed right into that foaming curtain, the ‘Maid of the Mist,’ like a majestic queen, turned slowly and moved without haste into more peaceful waters.

Within minutes, with seagulls swooping and diving in an aerial ballet around our boat, all that remained of that awesome experience was a chemical after-taste from the water still dripping from my hair.

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