It all started with a permit.Not a permit to get baptised, no, no, good gravy no. Does that even exist? I’ll google it and get back to you. Anyway.
So, this whole year I’ve been thinking about baptism. Getting baptised has been something I’ve wanted to do this year but kept putting off. I would also often forget about it when an opportunity came up. And today was no different. I hadn’t even thought of baptism in ages.
A friend and I went hiking/rock climbing today at a pretty out-the-way place, to get to the waterfall and rockpool at the top. Nothing intense. Our plans went awry pretty quickly though.
We pulled up to the parking area and were getting ready to leave the car when a lady, all official looking and that, came up to the window and asked my buddy if we had a permit.
The area was already starting to get incredibly warm for very early in the morning and we were just told that we’d need to go get a permit to hike this trail. So we drove off and scouted around for new parking, away from the eyes of Permit Lady. Eventually we found parking around 500 metres away, in some temporary shade.
Assessing the situation, my friend and I decided it would be a wise idea to climb down the embankment to the river, through the vegetation which included lots of dead plants, spider webs and thorn bushes. That way we would get past the Permit Lady and have lots of shade on our way to the hike.
To cut a long story short: that was the toughest part of the hike. I fell in the river, twice. Our feet were sore. It was slow going. Lots of rocks and thorns. But eventually we made it to the bridge at the start of the hike. As we sat on the edge, drying our shoes and socks and having a snack, we just looked at each other and laughed. The rest of the hike was a walk in the park compared to that.
There was some more intense parts that required one to use chains to scale some rocks but nothing major. My friend and I had some really interesting discussions, like the refugee crisis that hit Europe, the purpose of governments, relationships, the coming year and why I didn’t trust him for the first year I knew him. It was a very interesting discussion, I can assure you. Anyway, we finally made it to the top and this sight greeted me:
It was stunning. To give you an idea of height, a 6 foot man could stand at the base of that waterfall and his head would just be level with that first ledge. The sight was amazing. And then came the water itself. Now, this friend of mine had told me that the water was ice cold but I laughed it off. I can still remember thinking “I’m Capetonian, I know cold water”. Wow, was I wrong or what. There is no water on earth that is colder than that water. It felt arctic. My goodness. By the time, we got out that water, my feet were bone-white. I’m not even joking. I was convinced I was gonna lose them.
We were sort of messing about in the water when I felt this weird urge inside of me and I asked my friend three questions:
“Z, have you been baptised?”
“Do you know how to baptise someone else?”
“Will you baptise me?”
It was so sudden, I didn’t even realise I was asking it until it had already come out my mouth. He looked at me and was processing. He said yes and made his way over to where I was standing in the water. After more slipping and sliding over the rocks (there was no sand in this river, just rocks. Rocks as far as the foot could go), we eventually found a stable footing. In that ice-cold water, surrounded by 30 foot rock faces and trees, I was baptised.
I hope you’ve enjoyed this piece, it was such a cool experience.
Also technically this was two days ago, but I’ve had some technical issues with my computer until now.
God bless and have a great day everyone 🙂