Back in 2008 my sister convinced me to skydiving with her. I hadn’t thought about it up until that point, it was only really one of those things that I wanted to do “eventually” but never quite got to the top of the list. So when my sister offered to take me with one of her friends when I came into town to visit, I felt that the priority level of this event just got bumped up. Plus I wasn’t really doing anything anyway, and having this insatiable lust for doing adrenaline filled things in my late twenties (and now early thirties…yikes!) only pushed this over the edge for me. I had to do it. I was GOING to do it. And I did.
The experience itself wasn’t too bad. We couldn’t have asked for a better day in Bowling Green, MO. The weather was near perfect with light clouds in the sky and great ground temp of about 70 degrees. The people were friendly and most everyone had a good time. A couple of unique things that come to mind as I reflect back on it all are particularly interesting. The first being that when we went up into the plane to jump, you really don’t know just how cold it gets at 14,000 feet! Last I recall was that it got be about 36 to 40 degrees! It’s pretty cold up there! But you don’t realize it because you are so filled with adrenaline about the jump that your body is already quite warm. The second thing about the experience that was different, especially for me, was the fact that I got so pumped up adrenaline wise that when I jumped out with my instructor, I couldn’t breathe for the first second or two! I just kept gasping for air. I thought it was rather strange, but after a few seconds I got things under control and enjoyed it. If you watch the video carefully, you’ll see i look kinda like a fish out of water for a second right after getting out of the plane. You can see my face kinda get all squinchy and I’m doing the “OMG I’M IN FREEFALL AND I CAN’T BREATHE” face. Yeah, it was funny, but not so funny at the time. The entire journey, from exiting the plane to deploying the real parachute (not the small little thing he throws at the beginning) was only one minute long. After the jump, and talking with a few people, this was probably the maximum time anyone gets on their first jump, and most people don’t get to 14,000 feet either, they stay at around 10,000 or so.
One important thing for those who might do this at one point in their lives…I’m glad I dropped the extra cash for the pics and the video. I don’t usually do that kind of thing, but this was well worth it. And since I was in a pretty small down with a pretty small business, I felt I was definitely getting a good deal. I think I dropped about 150 to 200 for the whole thing. I don’t remember exactly, but I think that’s about right.
The whole experience was, and still is at the time of this writing, the single most high octane adrenaline rush I have ever received. I think that Wing Suit Base Jumping is the only other thing that will come close to this adrenaline rush. Or maybe bungie jumping. But who knows when I’ll get around to that! 🙂
*UPDATE* Well youtube is being a poop head and they don’t like the music in the video. Something about copyright blah blah and license ownership from WMG blah blah etc etc. Poop on you! I’m trying right now to upload it but WordPress is now being a poop head too! Max upload size is 64 meg and the video 115! DOUBLE POOP! I’ll see if I can’t figure out a work around here soon….