Down in the woods, way off the beaten path, is this treasure. We call it “Big Rocky Falls”. There is no public access, it’s part of a lease that my family has had for generations. It’s not easy to get to sometimes, depending on how much rain we’ve had, and you have to be careful. The rocks are slippery, unforgiving. 

In late spring, the rushing water has no time to warm up, and the first wade or swim of the season will be invigoratingly freezing. By this time of year, after being in the sticky southern heat for a good 30 minutes, feeling my skin hit the water will feel nothing short of heavenly. 

My memories of this place are plentiful and cherished. From spending time there with my sister, my cousins, to watching my daughter get as gritty as possible when playing on the sandbar was her favorite activity. I’ve camped here. Eaten a lot of watermelon here. Even read good books here. I’ve prayed here. Meditated. Searched my soul. It is reminiscent of carefree childhood and a time when jobs, responsibilities, and the future didn’t seem to matter so much.

Parts of the creek are ever changing. From one season to the next there are different colors that spring forth – the greenest greens of summer and the golden reds and browns of fall. All accentuating the beauty of the falls. It cares not about those outside elements. It simply flows, uninhibited by time, storms, people.

The creek is a culmination of generational memories and experiences, surrounded by the changing of outlying seasonal elements. The water flows fast, freely, rushing toward the unknown with the unrelenting hope of reaching the river of its destiny. 

The creek is me.