Monday, September 13, 2010

Remembering 9/11

To celebrate and commemorate 9/11, I decided to go skydiving…again. This makes for my third time, and it was the best to date. I'll admit, I had a moment of panic similar to the first time I did it. There I am, riding in one of their Cessna aircrafts, decked out in a hot pink skydiving suit, yellow goggles and an altimeter on my left wrist, so I am consciously aware of the increasing elevation. The plan is to do a couple line taps and then have me pull the cord to release the canopy.

As we get higher and higher, I remember looking out of the plane and thinking that the clouds looked to me like floating landmasses. They looked so solid, yet there they were, floating at 8,000 feet. Maybe it is the thinning air, but everything seemed clearer up there.

I remember being a nervous wreck my first time, and nervous yet calm the second time. However, when that door opened, panic set in, almost as bad as my first time, and I remember saying "oh no!" and thinking "I don't want to do this, put me down!"

I know, ridiculous, right? I survived twice, so why the panic attack? After all, I rappelled down a 13-story building for fun a couple weeks ago. But no, the moment that door opened, panic set in. So I hung on to my harness, put my foot out on the metal step outside the plane, and leaned forward out of the tiny plane with my eyes screwed shut. And the next thing I know, I'm faaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaling………..

Keeping an eye on the altimeter, my tandem instructor has me do a couple line taps. Then, when my altimeter reads about 6700 feet, I reach back and slowly pull the line, deploy the parachute's canopy! And if that wasn't enough, I got to steer the canopy part of the way down too. I absolutely loved the speed when spiraling!

AtmosphAir will be closing for the season at the end of October, but before than I will be going once more, for my birthday - I turn 24 on Friday, Oct. 8.

I want to do some crazy stuff next time around - backflips out of the plane and whatnot, but we’ll see what happens.

If anyone else feels like joining me for some good, old-fashioned, crazy-ass fun, you're welcome to join. There is a $50 deposit due before the date, and then it will probably be around $150 due the day of, so roughly $200 total, depending on how many people will be jumping. Interested parties can also purchase a video of their skydive for $79.

Mark the date: 10.10.10.

Start time: 9 a.m. for jumpers - they only have one class in October, so be prompt!

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