Like, totally awesome, dude!

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To reiterate, why would anyone want to jump out of a perfectly good aeroplane? Well that's what I was thinking for about a second and a half on the edge of the plane, and then we were in the air and it was all too late :)

So I called up Sydney Skydivers a couple of days ago to see if they had availability for today, which they did, at 8am. All good. Then last night they called me to see if we could be there at 7am. wtf? It takes an hour to get there, and we'd been planning on leaving at 7am already. Checked with Ric, he decided we could manage, so I was up at 5:15am.. blerk!!

We arrived at 7am and filled out all the necessary paperwork - "skydiving is inherintly dangerous" and "we don't take any responsibility for your death" and all that :) Then sit around for a few minutes wondering how long we'll have to wait, and then it's suddenly time to suit up. Mike was to be my jumping instructor dude. A very quick rundown on the landing (keep your feet right up) and the takeoff (bend ze knees, arms crossed, head up, then arch back, keeps arms crossed til a tap on the shoulder, then relax and enjoy the ride), and a test run of holding your legs up for landing. I asked Mike what would happen if he had a heart attack on the way down and couldn't pull the chute - he said there was an automatic release of the reserve chute at 2000' if all else failed.

Five minutes later we're in the plane and strapped to the floor. Being on the floor we couldn't see out the tiny windows, but after we'd reached 2000' Mike said I could get up and have a look out the windows, which I did. We could see the Hume Highway and Lake Cordeaux and Lake Cataract, as well as the airfield and Picton. Then we hit clouds and lost visibility somewhat.

At about 12000' we got ourselves all attached and goggles on, and the door opened. A few people went before me and it was kinda bizarre to see them just plumetting to earth. Then we were up. We were there for a mere second or so before falling out. Gosh it was loud. Next time I'm taking earplugs!! I almost put my arms out too early, but remembered and pulled them back in again. Once we were stably horizontal I guessed I'd be able to put them out again, and sure enough, tap on the shoulder. The freefall was very fast (yeah duh), and I found that I could spin us around by moving my hands the right way. Mike was doing this too. Very cool. We were heading right for a small cloud when suddenly there was this jerk. Didn't hit the cloud. And all the noise went away! :) Got to enjoy the rest of the ride down at a much more sedate pace, and could actually appreciate the scenery. Mike spun us around in the chute a few times, although the G-forces on the straps squeezed out the circulation in my legs! heh. We saw the plane we went up in come back into land, and saw a small plane take off from a backyard airstrip across the road.

The airfield is right next to the Hume Highway, so for the longest time it looked like we were heading straight for it. Some of the people in front of me got *very* close before sidestepping to land near reception. Mike landed us right next to Ric, who'd jumped before us.

So it was like, totally awesome dude..! :) A great rush after the initial "what the hell am I doing?" thoughts. Ric had problems with his ears not equalising, but I was ok. Then we wandered back to the office and de-suited and picked up our certificates. If I go back within three months I can get $100 off a jump.. does anyone want to come with me? :)

Then we did a quick detour to visit Yvonne and David before coming home again.

And now I have to go back to boring reality stuff, including work which I'm really not that interested in doing at the moment cause the boss couldn't be stuffed returning my calls and emails. Maybe I'll take Monday off or something. Also need more sleep. Five hours really isn't enough for me :)

6 Comments

Dave2 said:

I loved skydiving, but haven't done it in ages. Oddly enough, for my first time I was never nervous until after the jump was over... after that, I was nervous in the proper order.

January 8, 2005 5:17 PM

   

Yvone said:

now had it been at a REASONABLE time of day we woulda been there at the landing ground. Maybe next time EH?

January 9, 2005 8:11 PM

   

kazza said:

yup, next time :)

January 9, 2005 10:24 PM

   

Fiona said:

on my way to canberra on thurs, one of those sydney skydivers nearly landed on the highway as I was passing 0.0

January 10, 2005 11:07 PM

   

sossukuk said:

wow!!.. well done!

January 14, 2005 9:07 PM

   

Cazzie said:

Stumbled quite accidentaly upon your blog here. I have to say, I used to be in air cadets and quite a few of my mates used to sky dive. I lvoe flying, no problems, but I do have a problem with sinking feeling!! So, I could never sky dive, for fear of havoing a heart attack upon descent.
Any chance you could film your next jump? Thatd be great to see.

March 28, 2007 12:00 PM

   

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Kazza's "Boring Life Of a Geek" aka BLOG

IT geek, originally from Sydney, moved to Canberra in 2007. Married to "the sweetie", aka Stu. Prolific photographer, Lego junkie and tropical fish keeper.

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