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