The command was followed by a word denoting extreme cowardice.

It was addressed from a point in the creek’s water, perhaps 15 or even 20 feet under the bridge. As the sign denotes, jumping from the bridge is against a city ordinance. As the plethora of signs would suggest, the signs, presumably along with the rules, are frequent targets of youthful indiscretion.

It’s odd, to me, as there’s a [url=www.astrofish.net]new scope[/url] up and it uses a similar warning, drawn from this very creek.

The pedestrian “hike and bike” trail wends and winds along the north and south shores of the lake/river, through many park-like settings. There’s a short detour around the mouth of Barton Creek where it joins the river. The path across the creek is the bridge. The bridge is perfectly suited for summer fun, and in my long years on the trail, I’ve noted youths cavorting, jumping, and enjoying this illicit pleasure, almost daily in the summer.

On numerous occasions, I’ve been asked to try it myself because observing such action invariably provoke a smile from me. I’ve declined, and I will continue to decline, as I’m unsure of a number of factors, the most important being the depth of the water. With “see the fish” sunglasses, I can easily see the bottom of the creek and it looks like it’s only a few feet deep. Some would say I’m wiser, but I figure it’s more like I’m just older, and my bridge jumping days are over.

As I walked towards favorite spot to ease myself into the cold water, just as I was on the bridge going there, one of the guys pops up from the underbrush, soaking wet.

“Next time, I’m coming up on the other side!”

I was amused. I’m guessing he was with three other kids, undetermined age, but I’d estimate 13-15 years old. All of them were strong and resilient, typical urban kids bridge-jumping on summer afternoon in Austin. Breaking the law, too, not that it matters. I paid very little attention to the details so I cold not identify any of them.

I went for quick, cool dip in the creek myself. Dripping wet, I was headed back over the bridge when there was a new element introduced: girls. Three of them, in bikinis. Familiar with the guys. The three girls all had wet hair, so they’d either been swimming upstream or they were also jumping.

I crossed the bridge, just another pedestrian, although, I was obviously a swimmer, from the wet hair and all, and then, I turned and watched the kids.

The biggest of the girls, just hitting that first, full blossom of youth, dirty blond hair, she sat down at the high-point of the bridge, slithered under the guardrail and dropped into the water. The one dry guy, he took a ribbing one more time, and then emptied out his pockets and made for the rail.

It was lesson in what kids will do. It was also an abject lesson in what lengths a male will go to in order to impress a female.

Various permutations of the sign, and in some cases, some idea of how far it is to the surface of the water.

Can hardly wait for it to cool off, which, given the conditions, should be around the middle of December.


Laeti edimus qui nos subigant!
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About the author: Born and raised in East Texas, Kramer Wetzel, settled in a South Austin trailer park before trailer parks were cool. He now lives in San Antonio, Texas.

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