Monday, December 17, 2018
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When you stand at the edge of the overlook, gazing across at the mighty Niagara Falls, listening to its liquid thunder, you can't help but be impressed with its majestic beauty and its tremendous power. But that's as close as I want to get. A person who somehow fell into those churning waters would have little chance of survival; maybe no chance. That didn't seem to bother the famous tightrope walker known as the Great Blondin. No, back in 1859, he made history. He crossed the gorge of the Niagara River on a tightrope. At one point, he executed a back somersault. His next tightrope trip across the Falls, Blondin crossed on a bicycle, he walked across blindfolded, then he pushed a wheelbarrow, and he cooked an omelet in the center. He made the trip with his hands and feet manacled at one point. Then came his ultimate performance. He announced he would carry a man across the Falls on his back. Most of the folks believed he could do it. No one wanted to be the one who went on his back, though, except his manager who climbed on the back of the Great Blondin, and to the amazement of all who watched, he arrived safely on the other side.