A Stream of Thoughts on Rivers

March 29th, 2013

I don’t get rivers.

I mean, I understand the concept: water in a high place flows to a less high place. I just can’t fathom why they don’t stop.

Perceptually I have never experienced anything that doesn’t run out. Well, that’s not entirely true. The tap in my house seems to never run dry, but the small half inch pipe that runs to the faucet provides a minimal gallons per minute expenditure of liquid. The creek at the bottom of our yard, however, is probably flowing at a few dozen gallons per second. (Probably more.)

I just can’t fathom that there is that much water that still hasn’t rushed downhill yet. And it just keeps coming. It doesn’t stop.

This is just in my own back yard. Don’t even get me started on Niagara Falls.

Wikipedia tells me that Niagara Falls has an average almost four million cubic feet of water flowing over the edge every minute. That’s the size of a football field and 70 feet tall. And that’s just one minute’s worth of water.

I can’t confirm this, but I’m pretty sure Niagara runs 24/7. I don’t think they turn it off at night and refill the tanks. That’s a lot of water.

Thats. A. Lot. Of. Water.

My perception of space and time is rather warped, I’m guessing most people’s is, mainly because we travel from place to place really quickly and typically don’t have to deal with things that are mind boggling huge.

I’ve pretty much given up on trying to wrap my head around it, but I still think it’s pretty crazy.