Life advice: if going for a water hike in a flowing river--one that involves pulling yourself up slick rocks with rickety ropes while being distracted by the majestic rock canyons rising on either side--don't go in Crocs. I got a pair in Goa (don't judge; they looked like ballet flats). And I figured they'd be perfect for a water hike at Al-Mujib, a Jordanian nature reserve abutting the Dead Sea. They're supportive and lightweight. They dry quickly.
And indeed, the first half of the hike against the current proved me right. I didn't slip or feel weighted by the dreaded soggy sneakers. However, the moment we turned back (after reaching a canyon waterfall that toppled in from a bunch of high-up crevices in the reddish rock to form a forceful flow by its base) and the current was propelling us forward, one of my Crocs flew off. A moment later, so did the other. Did I mention the entire hike was over stones and pebbles and I was suddenly barefoot at the point furthest from the beginning?
I was able to retrieve one Croc, but the second one disappeared, leaving me to limp back half unshod, negotiating my way down all the rope-assisted steep rock faces we'd scrambled up. Eman said, "Only in Jordan would they let people do this kind of stuff without a guide."
I made it back, slowly, to the entrance and slipped on a lone left flip flop lying on the bank to wear on the walk across the street to the rustic chalet where we slept. (It and the reserve are run by the Royal Society for the Conservation of Nature, where Eman's sister works. The views here are unparalleled, but the flies are vicious.)
"Why must I always learn things the hard way?" I sighed to Eman. "I'll have to add 'don't wear Crocs on water hikes' to my list of things to keep in mind."
"You should also add, 'when Eman tells me I should wear sneakers, do it,'" she replied.