Rainbow Colours of Light – Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers

Flash Fiction for for Aspiring Writers is a writing challenge hosted by Priceless Joy. It asks us to write a piece of fiction from the photo prompt provided in around 100-150 words – give or take 25 words. It encourages us to comment, constructively, on other entries, so supporting each other’s writing. If you’d like to join in with this challenge, follow the above link to see what to do. The challenge runs from Wednesday to Wednesday every week.

Here is this week’s prompt, a beautiful picture, kindly provided by Etol Bagam:

wpid-photo-20150724122215416

. . . and this is my story:

Lost in his memories, Richard stood on the bridge that spanned the river as the tour guide delivered his spiel about the awesome falls. He’d been saving for this trip for two long years, and now their wedding anniversary had arrived.

Claire had always loved waterfalls. ‘There’s something magical about them,’ she’d said, so many times. ‘Imagine standing so close, small and insignificant in the drenching spray, whilst rainbow colours of light dance over the swirling plunge pool.’

Thirty years of married life had passed by in a haze of hard work and raising children. Now the four had flown the nest, leaving Richard and Claire alone.  So happy together …

The illness had taken her from him, just six months before their anniversary. Towards the end, Claire had made him promise not to cancel their holiday.

‘Just look at that rainbow, Richard!’ Claire’s joyful voice sounded inside his head.

Richard focused on the vibrant colours, blinking back the teardrops that threatened to flow like the cascading waters of the falls.

Word Count: 171

Rainbowbywaterfall. Licenced under Public Domain.
Rainbowbywaterfall. Licenced under Public Domain. This rainbow is in Iceland, but they are common in the water vapour /spray around many waterfalls.

*

If you’d like to view other entries, click the little blue frog below:

*********

Today’s prompt brought to mind a waterfall that I’ve looked at in geography lessons with Year 8 on several occasions. I don’t know whether the picture is of the Angel Falls or not, but there’s a definite similarity. I’ve never seen a photo showing a bridge, however, so it could well be somewhere else.

For anyone interested, here’s a little bit of information about the Angel Falls,  mostly from Wikimedia, but other snippets from various sites.

View of Angel Falls in National Park, Canaima, Venezuela. Author: Paulo Capiotti, uploaded by Slick-o-bot. Commons
View of Angel Falls in National Park, Canaima, Venezuela. Author: Paulo Capiotti, uploaded by Slick-o-bot. Commons

Angel Falls is situated in the Canaima National Park in Venezuela (South America) and is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is on the Guaja River (sometimes called the Kerep River or Kerepacupai). It is the highest uninterrupted waterfall in the world, dropping almost a kilometer (979 meters/3212 feet) from a cleft near the summit of table top mountain, Auyán-tepu, into Devil’s Canyon below. It is five times higher than the  Niagara Falls and three times as high as the Eiffel Tower in Paris.

During the rainy season, the waterfall splits into two:

1024px-Angel_Falls_in_Venezuela
Angel Falls, Venezuela, in the rainy season. Author: Luis Carillo. Commons

In the dry season (December -April) it looks like this:

Salto Angel in the dry season. Author: Tomaszp.  Commons
Salto Angel in the dry season. Author: Tomaszp.
Commons

 Angel Fall was named after the American airborne gold prospector, Jimmie Angel. In 1933, he flew over the falls in his Flamingo monoplane in search of a valuable ore bed. In 1937 he returned with his second wife, Marie, on board, along with acquaintances Gustavo Henry and Miguel Delgado. Although landing successfully at the summit of the falls, the plane’s wheels became stuck in the mud and they had to walk 12 miles through the jungle, which took 12 days. News of their adventure spread and the waterfall was named Angel Falls in his honour. The common Spanish name for the waterfall, ‘Salto Angel’, was first published on a Venezuelan government map in December 1939.

The plane remained marooned at the top of the mountain until 1970, when it was taken down by a helicopter. It  can usually be seen at the Aeronautics Museum of Maracay.

1024px-JimmieAngelPlane
Jimmie Angel’s aircraft, exhibited in front of Bolivar airport. Photo uploaded by Yosemite. Commons

Angel Falls is one of Venezuela’s top tourist attractions, though a trip out to it is a quite a complicated one, as the falls are located in isolated jungle. It requires a flight out to Canaima camp, followed by a boat or jeep ride to the falls. Tourists have only been permitted to visit since 1990. The first visitors stayed at Boulton Camp (now known as Campamento Canaima).

These Falls also inspired the setting of the Disney film Up in 2009, although it was called Paraduse Falls. It was also seen briefly inthe Disney film Dinosaur, as well as the 1990 film Arachnaphobia.

800px-Angel_falls_panoramic_20080314
Panoramic, partly clouded, view of Angel Falls. Author Jlazovskis. Commons

72 thoughts on “Rainbow Colours of Light – Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers

    1. Thank you so much, PJ. It was a bit of a tear-jerker story this week. Angel Falls has always fascinated me, probably because it’s in the middle of tropical jungle, not to mention the height! I like the story about Jimmie Angel, too – it’s a nice bit of history. 🙂

    1. Thanks, Alex. I thought you were on holiday somewhere nice and hot! I hope you had a wonderful time, wherever it was. I’ll hop over and check what I’ve missed on your blog as soon as I can. 🙂

      1. Oh how gorgeous. We went to the Dom. Rep. nine years ago and loved it. We had a really hot two weeks and did lots of great things, including a day horse-riding through the rainforest. I’m away all this week, so time for getting onto my blog is limited. I’ll try to do some catching up when I get home. Glad you had a great holiday! I’ll look forward to your post.

  1. That’s nice. I really liked the story, as well as the information about Angel Falls. But the waterfall in the picture is actually Multnomah Falls, in Oregon state, USA. It’s tall, but not even close to a kilometer long… (I guess it’s about short of 200 meters ;o)

    1. Thank you so much, Etol. I had a feeling it wasn’t Angel Falls when I couldn’t find a single picture showing a bridge like that, But the single column of water was so similar, it jerked a few happy memories for me – not of having been to Angel Falls of course, just looking at it in geography books! I was hoping you, or someone else who wrote a story, would let me know where the prompt photo actually was. It’s lovely, especially the way you’ve edited it, 🙂

  2. It always saddens my heart hearing a beautiful love story coming to an end, especially an earthly end. This reminds me of a certain kind of ‘forever’. A forever not shared but sustained. I hope Richard lives happily and goes on with life. 🙂

    1. Thank you, Maria for such a lovely comment. I imagine it would be hard for Richard to carry on without Claire at first, but Time, as they say, is a great healer. I love your phrase ‘A forever not shared but sustained. It fits perfectly. 🙂

    1. Yes, it was rather sad this week. I did a happy ending last week, so I thought I’d have a change. 🙂 Your suggestion about Richard taking her ashes to the Falls is a good one. I could have added that (depending on word limit!) Thank you for that, Scrapydo. 🙂

  3. Wish Claire was still there celebrating anniversary with Richard and look at the rainbow over the waterfalls together! Is it romantic? But well the story you created was beautifully written and always made us want to read more. Very well done Millie! 🙂

    1. Thank you so much, Khloe. It is sad, I know. It would have been wonderful for them to have celebrated their anniversary together. I just wanted to show that not every story ends happily. (I did a happy ending last week! 🙂 ) ❤

      1. You’re most welcome dear😊 Yes, you are right – not every story ends happily. That’s how you made the story interesting to us and always unexpected 😝 I just love the story you created ❤️

  4. The story is achingly beautiful! It broke my heart a little bit, but I am also happy as it shows just how much true love can do to people.

    On a side note, I love the pictures, and the added information. Thank you so much for sharing, Millie!

    1. Thank you, Diana. It’s funny how some prompts lead us to write sad things, whereas others promote happy thoughts. I adore waterfalls. They’re just so magical… (Perhaps I should be writing a fantasy novel!) 😀

      1. Yes, they are! I absolutely love waterfalls, as well. We only have few ones here, and most of them are not that high. I still think they’re majestic though. Does Angel Falls happen to be your most favorite one?

      2. I have a lot of favourite waterfalls. One is the Victoria falls on the Zambezi River in Zimbabwe (Africa). It’s a mighty waterfall, so wide and totally awesome. The Iguazu Falls in Brazil are also one of my favourites- and of course, there’s also Niagara. Angel Falls is stunning because of its great height, but in the dry season the flow is limited. I love its setting, out there in the jungle.
        In the UK we have nothing spectacular like some of those, but there are some very pretty ones dotted around our highland regions. I’ve seen many of the British ones but, as yet, none of the others except for in books and videos. I seriously need to win the lottery! Fat chance of that! lol. 🙂

    1. Thank you, Ameena. Yes, they were a very happy (fictional) couple. I think the moral of the story (which I’ve only just thought of) is to enjoy life while you can. Illness can strike at any time. (Now I’m getting morbid, so I’ll stop that line of thought! lol.) Thank you for the lovely comment, Ameena. 🙂

    1. It is life, I’m afraid. We never know what’s around the corner. But that has to be a good thing – it’s best not to know. Thank you for the lovely comment, snowsomewhere. I’ll be visiting your blog today. I’ve got a bit behind this week. Hope all is well with you and the job is still good for you. 🙂

  5. Never expected that ending. 😉 A sad and emotional story.:)
    Also loved the info and beautiful photos of the Angel Falls. Oh! that animation from the movie Up was really great.

    1. Thank you, Norma. 🙂 I’ve only seen excerpts of ‘Up’ but it looks to be a great film. My love affair with waterfalls will last forever… As for my story, it was a sad one this week, But, being left alone after years of ‘togetherness’ is an all too common occurrence. A happy story next time – depending on the quote, of course. 🙂

      1. It is one of my favourite movies after Ratatouille. Up is little sad and too emotional (for me) compared to the other one.
        😀 Will wait for the next one. 🙂
        Take care Millie.

  6. Thank you for this sad but beautiful story. It is always one who has to live with their loneliness. The waterfall is unspeakably beautiful. We are blessed living in this world.

    1. Thank you, Susan. Waterfalls are so inspirational, for writers, poets and artists. Some of the world’s finest are just mind-blowingly beautiful, and even smaller ones can bring a lump to my throat. Thankk for likeing the story, too. 🙂

  7. Great fiction, Millie. Some coincidences that came to mind as I read your story. It is my 30th anniversary this year, so I felt empathy for the protagonist, and I once planned to go to Venezuela to see Angel Falls – but circumstances meant I never got there…

    1. How strange that I picked those two things – thirty years and Angle Falls. It must have given you a bit of a jar when you read it. I hope you enjoyed however you celebrated your anniverary, anyway. I’d love to see Angel Falls, but we have an ever-lengthening list of places to visit. Glad you liked the story! 🙂

  8. Ohh, so sad. 😦 Beautifully told as always. Did you take the Geography shots? They are so beautiful. I remember my Yr11 and 12 geography classes. We spent most of them in the hills and looking back into the valley where the school was. Your water-falls are fabulous! Isn’t it special? How nature gives us rainbows over waterfalls…Well-done Millie.

  9. Thank you so much for that lovely comment, Joycelin. I’ve studied waterfalls a lot and taught about them for years. I find them magnificent things – even those we have in Britain, which are tiny compared to many around the world. I’ve never been to Angel Falls, but would love to. 🙂

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.