8th April 2010
Ok, so for the past week or so I have been a bit down in the dumps. The 6th anniversary of my Mum's death is the 8th of April (today), and I haven't been taking it well. I never do. Mum's birthday is on the 9th March, so the entire Month from then to her anniversary is a pretty bad one for me. I have tried to stay away from here, as much as possible, and away from writing full stop actually. Because everything I have written these past few days has been tainted with a dash of the 'I'm-depressed-feel-sorry-for-me's', and I didn't want that to translate through to this blog.
That said, from this day forth, I swear on the Bible there will be, as Mum would say, "No More Blubbering!" And I think Mama Kat's - Writers Workshop, is a perfect way for me to begin. So let's do it!
I WAS going to pick this prompt. 2.) What book captured your heart? Write about why the first book you loved is the first book you loved. However, I considered the fact that the post would probably be 5000 words long, and filled with my inner-critic's pretentious grandstanding. Along with many big words. Like A LOT. So I thought I'd save you all my preposterous anal-ness, and I went with this one...
5.) Where does that fear come from? Write about something that frightens you that other people might find ridiculous. Write about it in a poem, a story, or whatever.
Okay. Here goes...
I am deathly afraid of DRIVING over bridges that are above water.
There. I said it. Phew!
Normal bridges don't bother me. Give me a huge structure, 10 stories high, and I'll trundle across it without a problem. But stick a trickle of water underneath it, a minuscule flow; and I am reduced to an infant, curled into foetal position, sucking her thumb and crying for her Mummy.
(Oh, and I can WALK across a bridge, jetty/pier or whatever, with water underneath it without a problem. Hmm... Go figure.)
My original fear stems from when I was a child, early teen actually, and my Mum, two brothers and I were caught in a storm driving home from the local 'Trash and Treasure' market.
There was a short bridge that we had to cross on the way out that had a small river running underneath it.
It had never bothered me previously, but on this particular day, it was raining fiercely, and the river had swollen to the point of bursting it's banks. Unfortunately that also meant that it had risen above the level of the bridge, and water was washing rapidly across it.
The bridge, being so tiny, didn't have guard rails, so crossing it at the best of times was an unnerving experience.
This particular day, it was terrifying.
We had a small car, and started out slowly. I think that was our mistake.
The water rushed across underneath our tires, caught the car, and we sailed from one side of the bridge to the other. Luckily for us, the bridge DID have raised edges and that stopped us from being washed over the rim into the water. I was shit-scared that we were going to be swept away and drowned, stuck in the car, unable to climb free.
Mum revved the car, water lapping against tires trying desperately to find purchase on the slippery wood. I was holding my breath, willing the car off the bridge. FINALLY it took, and we were headed for the end in a hurry.
It felt like forever, but I'm sure the whole episode took only 30 seconds or so. We stopped on the other side, Mum and the boys were a bit shaky. But me... I was a mess. It shook me to the very core.
Ever since that day, I have been petrified of driving over bridges with bodies of water underneath them, no matter how big or small. I will drive for hours out of my way, to avoid crossing one. Ridiculous I know, but I just can't help myself.
Oh... And I'm also absolutely TERRIFIED of clowns. But that's a story for another day!