Waterfalls and hours of fun!

Tree swings

So sounds like I’m from an exotic Island with palm trees and white sand, right? Wrong!

Growing up in a rural village in Scotland where you’re lucky if the temperature hits 15 degrees in the summer is more like it. But being an adventurous child and spending hours and hours of fun ‘doon the glen’ (which is a sort of valley) finding frogs and making tree swings from old tyres and random bits of rope amongst other things was how I was brought up.

Lyndsey at playWe found an amazing spot alongside the stream with a fairly large, well we thought so at the time, waterfall surrounded with rocks. The reason we found it, and I hope my mum isn’t reading this, was on a sunny afternoon my friends Amanda, Nicola and I decided to venture out a little further than we were aloud at the time and the spot became our favourite place to hang out. Of course we told our parents we were all round each other’s houses. So off we went on our roller blades. Through the gardens of the old people’s home and across the main road through the bushes and stinging nettles, and of course the midges, to ‘our paradise’.

One of my favourite games we used to play was to see who could circuit the waterfall the fastest, barefoot! One by one off we went while the others were timing using the very efficient method of ‘one elephant, two elephant’ counting system. We would go from the verge, jumping onto the large stone right at the top of the waterfall, jumping again from the stone to the opposite verge weaving in and out of grass and bushes to the bottom, crossing the lower stream and scrambling up the other side. We made it way cooler than it sounds.

Thinking back it was a little dangerous, supposing one of us fell off and into the water? But when you’re a care free child that self doubt we have as adults never enters your head. We had the MOST fun and it is something we all still reminisce about today.

And I’d just like to add that I always won the waterfall game 🙂

Lyndsey McCullagh is PA and Projects Assistant at Play England. To mark the launch of the Policy Studies Institute (PSI) research on independent mobility, Play England staff will be sharing their personal stories and thoughts on the subject throughout the week on this blog, we hope you enjoy them.

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