Now some of you have seen it as a one-plank bridge, the usual footbridge. But when Richard wants to take stuff in the garden cart across the creek to Owl, he puts down another plank, the width of the wheels apart, and rolls the cart across there.
So I came down to the bridge in a confident mood, with stuff hung off of me on all sides and the pack with Bird One and some other stuff on my back, and was about to walk on one plank, as I'd done on the way over, when it occurred to me...why not walk on *two* planks, one foot on each? The boards aren't *that* far apart...
Um. The thing is, the boards are just set on some rocks. They aren't *anchored.* And they wiggle. And jiggle. And...shift. And due to that, they are not, as you might think, actually *parallel*...
You see this coming, right?
So I put a foot on the west end of each board, and the south board twists a bit, counter-clockwise, as it always does. No big deal. Used to that. And...I took a step. OK, it was awkward (those boards are farther apart than I thought) but with little steps...
I was about halfway across when I realized the boards were getting farther apart. Not a lot...but it didn't take a lot. I stopped, thought about it. The drop down to the dry streambed wasn't *far*...just...awkward. Besides, I wanted to go the whole way. That was the game. *Surely* my legs would stretch that far (yeah, like I've been doing my riding stretches, sure I have....) I took another step. Something in the hip joint said, very distinctly, "You aren't a kid anymore." I told it to shut up. The other hip said "I'm warning you...!" I told it to shut up, too.
I tried various postures for creeping, a tiny step at a time, across the bridge with my feet getting farther and farther apart, but let's just say I'm really glad no one was there with a camcorder. Did I mention I didn't have my usual walking stick with me? The farther I went, the more aware I become of tiny variations in balance....the binoculars swinging on this side...the camera...the other stuff...and all the things I could hit on the way down if I didn't make it.
But of course I did make it to the far side without falling off or giving up, and all was well as I came back to the house, fed the horses, fed the cat...all was well until I *sat down* for a little. And then got up...well...attempted to get up...and both hips said GOTCHA!
Once upon a time I was a pretty good tree-climber...hung by my knees upside down over a clump of cactus to pluck a dead white-wing from its innards and was able to curl back up...and once upon a time I had no problem balancing in all sorts of situations.
But I'm not thirteen anymore. But I did it ANYWAY!