February 29, a leap day, an extraordinary day. Considering the special regard this day is held in, I started thinking of extraordinary moments. Those are the times that I hold fast to because I know they will rarely, if ever come again.
One of the most extraordinary moments that I will never forget was when I stood against a rock wall, looking down into the valley — one misstep and I would’ve plunged down. It was beyond terrifying but simultaneously the epitome of awesome. Initially I refused when my host prodded me to step to the very edge. He took me my hand though, making feel a teensy bit more secure. I looked down, careful not to slip on gravel and when I finally looked up, I couldn’t breathe.
How often do we look at the heavens and realize how insignificant we are? Looking at that valley, I experienced this a hundred times over. The cliffs were scarily steep in every direction I looked. I didn’t dare check how steep the cliffs were below my feet. As I looked down, I could make out the streams of water below. They were so far away, they looked tiny and yet, measured against the Larks, I knew the streams were massive too.
Sadly, I didn’t get to take a photo. My hands were trembling, making it impossible to hold a camera. I would’ve dropped it, had I even tried. On the flip side, perhaps this is a good thing because knowing I have no photo makes me hold onto that memory that much tighter. A photo would’ve contained everything on an unfairly small scale. This way, my experience cannot be belittled.
Above you see a photo that sort of shows the steepness of the gorge. You can even see a house perched atop on the right. In comparison, you realize that the plunge is enormous and that’s really just a minor fraction. Looking down, in that extraordinary moment, I was sure that drop was infinite. (Though in reality it probably was 1000 metres, or maybe 1500 metres deep at the very most.)