Take note of any portents the heavens may offer

I had this great heading. The one above if you didn’t notice. 

But I had nothing to go with it. Just read it somewhere and liked it instantly. Copied it into a heading in a draft blog post for future use. Thought I’d find something in my life that I could write about and link to the concept. 

But seems the heavens don’t offer me portents. Or signs. 

Or I’m just blind to them. 

Probably a good thing because I’d misuse the gift for, well not quite evil purposes, but selfish ones. Actually in moments of weakness I could probably misuse such a gift for evil. 

But wait, I thought of a sign. Not just sent from the heavens, but more temporal agencies. In my sense of bravado, I ignored it. Much to my peril. 

There is this amazing cave in Tasmania called The Remarkable Cave. You walk down step steps in a crevice in the cliff. The cliff then separates you from the sea. The wild, southern ocean. A cave joins the crevice and the sea, straight through the towering mountain of rock. 

The viewing platform allows you to look into the cave. At certain angles, the opening at the sea looks like a map of Tamania. (The real one.)


But even more remarkably, the cave separates in two in the middle of the tunnel. And if the tide and angle is right, you can see the second opening to the ocean. 

The viewing platform, understandably, is solidly built, with five foot high railings, made especially to resist easy climbing. It is perched high above the cave floor. All to stop people from walking into the cave and being swept away to their death, body lost in the endless southern ocean. Multiple signs if ever I saw them. 

Oh tell me you can guess where this is going? Yes, I scaled over the platform railing and scrambled/slide/dropped down off the viewing platform to walk inside the cave and followed Mr S into the off-shoot of the tunnel. 


And while we were standing looking out to the ocean, a massive  wave rolled up the main entrance, BLOCKING our exit. A veritable tsunami. 

The tide had turned!

I freaked. I screamed. I yelled, “The tide, Mr S. The tide. We’re gunna die.”

Ignoring my bung knee, I lept into the water, thigh deep and still coming in, and ran down the tunnel, fearing the incoming tide, not knowing if another wave would sweep me out to sea, not knowing the speed of the tidal change this far south. Not thinking nor caring if there were sharks or an undertow. 

Why had I ignored all the signs – both literal and metaphysical?

Never fear, dear reader. I made it. 

Meanwhile Mr S waited for the wave to return to the sea, and walked around, with only a slight dampness of his shoes. He did later say he thought he’d have to dive in and rescue me. (And it is the thought that counts.)

I had to do the walk of shame back to the car in my wet pants. 

Portents do abound. Not just warning safety signs from local authorities. But signs within. Knowing my own fear of the ocean, knowing my own limitations, feeling my inner warning signals of imminent danger. 

The moral to this story is: don’t talk to bears in the woods and be content with viewing from the safety platform. 

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4 thoughts on “Take note of any portents the heavens may offer

  1. OMG. I’m sure you know full well and don’t need a scolding but…that is diabolically dangerous!!! I got extra worry lines on the forehead reading that. I’d be tempted to go exploring as well but I do draw big lines in the sand (ha! I pun) when it comes to any kind of wave, tide or rip. Good grief! Imagine the headlines if misfortune had befallen you!!

    When I hear ‘portent’, I instantly start saying Sylvia Plath’s ‘Black Rook in Rainy Weather’ in my head. Love that poem. Love the word, as well.

    • Consider myself scolded.

      I never really read much Plath. Just looked up that poem. There’s a YouTube clip of Plath reading it. Totally to my reading of the poem. Thanks for the education.

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