Sunday, September 2, 2012

Myer Creek

Do you have cousin memories... memories that you share only with your cousins?

I get goose bumps and shiver when I just think about stepping into that freezing green water...

I am number 20 in a family of 21 cousins on my mom's side.  Although we have a big range in ages, I know that this place holds similar memories for all of us.

After waiting the necessary hour after eating, a group of cousins would grab towels and head down the dirt road to this perfect spot. (Several decades later, I'm wondering about how important it was to wait that hour.  I don't think anyone would sink since this was about 2 feet deep in its deepest spot.)

I didn't paint him there, but I'm certain there's at least one big water moccasin sunning himself on one of those big rocks in the back.  As we arrived it was the job of the little cousins to make lots of noise and splash the water.  The big boy cousins had to throw rocks at the snakes so that they'd slither off the rocks and away into the water. That would ensure our safety from them. (Again, looking back, maybe we'd have been better off letting the snakes stay on the rocks where we could keep an eye on them!)

No one but us knows how much cousin labor it took to drag those rocks into the right place to slow the water enough to form that little pool.  There would already be some of the dam left over from the last family get-together, but it would take the majority of our time to line up those rocks and build the barrier that would give us a swimming pool.  It was important to remember to lift the rocks first on the side away from you so that anything hiding under could make an escape.  (I'm pretty sure, my cousin Matt and I used our "we're the littlest" excuse to let the others do most of that work.)

The rocks were so slick on the down-river side of the dam and the water was faster, so it was really hard to stand up there.  Plus there was always the fear of being washed away under the low-water bridge where the spiders lived. (Now that I think about that, that might nave been a big cousin trick to keep the little cousins on the pool side.)

The best place to lay out (catch all those grand rays that would fry our skin before anyone knew that wasn't a good idea) was on the bridge.  It was nice and flat and sunny.  The only bothersome thing was having to jump up and pick up your towel when someone yelled, "Car's comin'!" (Yeah, I'm looking back on that plan as not such a good idea either.)

What good times... 
I wonder if my cousins have any other memories of Myer Creek that I've forgotten?


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