Jumping off the Cliffs

April 10, 2008
By Casey Matter, Lakeside, MT

I was standing on top of the cliff. I looked down and I thought that if I jumped, I could hit the rocks sticking out, but if I jumped far enough then I would land in the water.
Padric, Tyler, Grady and I were at my grandparents place on flathead lake. Padric and Grady are my brothers and Tyler is Padric’s friend. These cliffs that we were going to had been jumped off by my mom and her friends. So I guess that counts as a sort of family “tradition”. We had to take the paddle boat across the bay. My big brother Padric and Tyler paddled up to this small crevice where we tied up the boat to a tree branch. We hopped off the boat and grabbed onto the rocks carefully and slowly so we wouldn’t slip and fall. The short path to the top of the cliff isn’t very steep but it is uphill. We all walked up the pointy sharp path where we were going to jump.
Padric and Tyler told me I was scared but I was only scared of hitting the rocks and my bikini falling off.
“Are you gonna jump or what?” asked Padric.
I have jumped off many times before but not from the top. I was jumping about the half point. Should I? I wasn’t sure.
I slowly backed away from the edge and then quickly ran forward and jumped as far as I could go. It was almost like the long jump in track and field. As I jumped I screamed at the top of my lungs. I knew they would all laugh at me for this. I mean it wasn’t that bad to jump off it just looked bad standing at the edge. Now that I think of it I don’t know why I was so nervous to jump off.
I hit the water with both pieces of my bikini on. I didn’t hit any rocks that were sticking out and I didn’t hit the bottom of the lake. When I came up from underwater I just felt like I had made an accomplishment. It felt the same as jumping from the half point place and just more air time. I swam back over and climbed up again.
“See I told you it wasn’t so bad” said Padric.
Now I jump off from the top of the cliffs. Grady still belongs at the half point place. One day I will pressure Grady to jump off, but not now. I don’t think that I would have jumped off that first time if Padric and Tyler wouldn’t have told me to.

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