Saturday, July 6, 2013

Sky Diving!!!!!

Today, I went sky diving and here is my high flying experience.

Two things are huge here, one my fear of repeat visits when I have been poorly treated and professional sky divers being scared of flying trapeze (what?).

Last summer, we purchased a groupon and signed up to fly September.  Unfortunately, it was much to winding for tandem jumping.  We were told it was going to get windier into the season and if we didn’t book our jump before the end of the season we would lose out on the Groupon discount.  During this exchange the staff was very rude.  I am one of those people that often will remove myself and not put myself in that position again.  We did reschedule and we were canceled again because of the wind.  I was pleased since I now had a stigma of going back to the place.  I was (and still am) unhappy with the staff they really upset me.

So my friend worked some magic and had our tandem jump scheduled for today.  To be completely honest, considering how we had been treated I would have been okay just forgetting about it and losing the money I had spent on it.  I was completely frightened to see these people again.  A normal person would be frightened of the tandem jump.  Nope, I was frightened by the employees because they had treated us poorly.

My friend was there ridiculously early.  Upon my arrival (an hour early), I was bombarded by one of the employees.  I had no chance to take in my surroundings and get over my fear and reluctance to see these people again.  I was rushed into the office and handed a waiver to fill out.  Because the staff member sensed I was upset in some manner she chose to interpret is as me being angry when in reality I was completely frightened of her.  I was rushed and I didn’t know what was going on.  I had said something about being early and she made a statement saying I can refuse the forms but then I can’t jump.  Then we were moved outside to watch a legal video and again she had another rude remark about my bad attitude.  I had already had an emotional morning.  I really wanted to give her the forms back and walk out, but I was there and I had my payment already.

Thing is as someone in her profession she has to see people dealing with fears everyday and should be able to work with people in that state without demeaning them or misinterpreting the situation.  I was frightened of her.  I really didn’t want to be treated poorly again by the staff and it happened.  It happened again to me and me alone.  I am still upset about it.

So more to the fun stuff, apparently the majority of the staff is freaked out my flying trapeze.  They sky dive but no trapeze for them.  I find that surprising.

Once you’re the next group to go, they suit you up in a harness with a million buckles (or it seemed like it).  Once the group before you lands everything else happens pretty quickly.

Ready to jump!
The guy I actually jumped with was super cool.  We were in a tiny plane.  I mean tiny and seated on the floor in close quarters.  My instructor gave me a bunch of instructions about what was going to happen and I forgot pretty much all of them immediately.  I can only take in so much at a time and I knew I was going to get reminders along the way, but I had a clue when those reminders came.

The flight up was breath taking.  It’s amazing seeing the island from up above and actually knowing what I am looking at.  I saw Fire Island and several other beaches.  At a certain height, our instructors clipped us to them which was interesting.  My friend jumped first and then I got the task of walking in unison on my knees to the door.  He put one leg out.  I followed with one leg which wasn’t so easy because the wind wanted to rip my leg off and out of the plane but no I have muscles and I used them.  Then I had to get my other leg out which was much easier.  Letting go of the handle and holding my harness was a bit nerve racking, but I then remembered how I was strapped to another person that wasn’t about to let me fall.  So I held on to my harness and put my head on his shoulder (yes that’s an actual instruction) and off we went.

The free fall is amazing!  It was just like flying trapeze because we get that feeling of weightlessness in trapeze, but with skydiving it lasted much longer.  It’s funny because when you’re sitting on the side of the plane the wind is intense I had to wonder if we were going to be blow about in the free fall, but not at all.

Then, with no warning, he pulled the parachute!  The parachute is super jerky when it’s pops out.  He then readjusted my harness in the chest area (for more comfort) and the legs (for proper landing).  Then we just floated down.  Apparently, they do some fun spinning in the parachutes.  He did spin once with me and I asked him to stop because I was getting crazy dizzy.  Thankfully he heard me.  If I skydive again I am taking anti-nausea meds.  My friend is very used to spinning, but I am not and it doesn’t take much to mess me up.

On the parachute ride down I took a long hard look around (when I wasn’t nauseous).  It’s so crazy how the world looks from above.  It was like looking at a diorama with fake grass, dirt patches and trees.  When we got closer I even spotted my car from above which looked more like a hot wheels then a working vehicle.  I also got to watch my friend descend since she was in front of me.

During the flight until the landing, my instructor was trying to scare me.  I found it funny.  He had the pilot  open the window in my face (I guess I was supposed to think the plane was breaking), when his wrist piece started beeping (I know it gauges the air pressure) he tried to pretend something was wrong… I guess I was too calm and collected.  After flying trapeze for three years skydiving was cake.  I also do not have a fear of heights.  None.  I had no fear throughout the entire jump.  It was delicious tasting the air.

Overall, sky diving was awesome and I am so happy I did it.  It’s definitely something I had on my bucket list.  I may or may not do it again.  If I do sky dive again it will not be with the same company.  Even though everyone else there was really cool, I don’t want to ever see that woman again.  I will also bring anti-nausea meds as well.

One of the staff members was kind enough to take video of our landings.
Here is mine!

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