...Gutted to leave Milford as it was even more stunning than I had envisaged but Woody and I had a skydive to look forward to the next day.
We were up early again yesterday to get to Queenstown in reasonable time before our jump and decided to take a look at some other thrill seekers bungee jumping off Kumara Bridge (the original modern day bungee jump and where the England boys were last week).
We drove into town to meet up at 'Nzone', the company that we booked through and after a little waiting around with our group and a nervy Wood we headed to base camp to the drop zone.
Now I have to be honest I was feeling a little too relaxed about the whole experience to this point and even after a debrief from our instructors I was feeling more relaxed than I felt I should about willingly throwing myself out of a plane from 15,000ft. I think Wood was feeling the adrenaline a bit more than me and kept on saying he could not wait to get up there.
After saying our 'last goodbyes' to Tim we were off! Take off was smooth in the 8-seater and, as I was taking in the view at about 3,000ft, Graz my Hungarian instructor (aka the guy who I entrusted my life to) explained 'the plan'! At this point my ticker started racing! It felt like an age circling at 15,000ft before I saw my good friend and drinking buddy for the best part of a decade jump out the plane… nice knowing you mate!
I was soon on the ledge literally hanging out of the plane waiting for the green light. Next thing I knew I was free falling towards the earth. What a rush! A couple of tumbles and then we stabilized and what a feeling with the whole of Queenstown beneath me. I simply cannot start to describe how truly unbelievable the view was but after 60 seconds the freefall was over and Graz hit the parachute and I was treated the ultimate wedge! I loved every second and asked Graz to take a 'roll' - basically a 360 fast spin before landing on terra ferma. I gave it the double fist pump and was buzzing for the rest of the afternoon. I want to do that again and soon!
We celebrated with a beer back in town and enjoyed a world famous 'Ferg' burger - it was well worth the 12 bucks. We watched Japan and Canada slog it out in a cracking 23 all draw in the World cup and called Copey to wish him a very happy 30th before hitting a wall as the adrenaline wore off.
This morning I went for a run around Queenstown and we are currently on the road north to Franz Josef for some ice climbing tomorrow. Looking forward to another day in the great outdoors. I feel alive and the world is a beautiful place right now with the sun on my back and some Rolling Stones to keep us company.
A side note regarding our beard growth. Arguably I am a week behind the boys but I think even if you gave me another 12 weeks I wouldn't be able to generate the beard that they are both donning at the moment. I am almost now out of fake tashes for the game on Saturday so I am currently trying to grow my very own. You'll be glad to here that with all the sunshine we've had is it going a nice golden blonde colour rather than any shade of ginger (sorry sis!).
Photos to follow…
P.S Happy birthday to our great mate Copey. 30 years young my old mucka! Wish you were here mate but hope you had a great day yesterday.