"You only live once."
The mantra spoken by Jet Sanz uncle Coop just before he took his dives off of some of the most beautiful cliffs in Glen Canyon. Tragedy had entered Jet's life at a young age. And he looked up to his uncle Coop more than anyone. His uncle had planned on giving young Jet the best 16th birthday that he would never forget. And he did just that. This day was the beginning of a much bigger purpose for Jet. It would just take him nearly as many years to find out what that bigger purpose actually was?
From chapter 4
They weren't the highest cliffs in Glen Canyon, but they weren't the lowest either. "You sure about them?"
He nodded, and I pulled to the shore, parking the boat. My legs shook as we climbed up to the top of the cliff. No one was around – at first. Then a family of five came up behind us, the dad asked, "You boys gonna make a dive today?"
"We are," Coop confirmed.
"Mind if we watch?" the dad asked.
I minded. I didn't want to shriek like a little girl in front of the man's whole family — especially the teen girls in his brood. But Coop didn't mind at all. "That'll be cool. Won't it, Jet?"
"Sure." I so was not cool with it.
The teen girls squealed with delight, "Yes!"
Coop and I went to the edge of the cliff, looking straight down. "I've never looked down like this and even once thought, I'd sure like to jump off this cliff and plunge into the deep water below." I looked at Coop. "What do you think when you look down there?"
"Feel that heat, Jet?" He lifted his arms in the air. "It's all of ninety-five degrees out here. Dry as a bone too. And that water is cool, clean, crisp, and inviting me into its blue embrace. The air when you're going down is cool against your hot skin. You can feel every hair on your body bristle as adrenaline courses through your veins. Then you hit the water, hands first, then your head goes under the refreshing liquid and life is a hell of a lot better somehow."
"I hope you're right." I watched the water rippling as a fish jumped down there. "How many feet down do you think it is?"
"Twelve feet, Jet. I picked it because it matches your age now." He smiled at the people who'd come to flank us on both sides. "Today Jet is twelve-years-old."
"Happy birthday, jet," they all said in unison.
"Thanks, guys." I gulped as I looked down. "Why does it seem more like twenty feet, instead of twelve?"
"You'll get used to it when you dive more." Uncle Coop got ready to make the dive. "Okay, I want you to do it just like me, Jet. A simple dive – nothing fancy." His feet left the rock. "You only live once!"
I held my breath as he went down, down, down, splash! One, two, three, four - his head came up, and he waved. I nodded and looked at the people around me. "I guess I'm going now. You only live once, anyway. See ya."...