Skydiving - Now this was definitely the funniest event of the Moose trip and typically for me - it didn't go smoothly!
We went skydiving on the last day, on the way back to Vancouver. I paid for a dvd of the whole experience (this included me embarrassing myself in the tuition phase) and I was pleased that I did cos it was well worth it. We got given our suits and for some reason the instructor gave me a bright pink one - nice! We had about 5 minutes of tuition and I then had to do a short demonstration, to prove that I understood. I did it all backwards - typical! I think I must have worried the instructor cos he decided that I would jump with him. Everyone else was strapped to jumpers from another plane that they didn't meet until we got on our plane. In fact, I was quite pleased that I got the main man because he was very calming and had obviously done it many many times before.
The airplane was from World War II and covered in army paint. Apparently it's safer than a modern plane cos it's all manual so there's not so much to go wrong (I'm not so sure about this really). The runway was like a little footpath in this field and when we saw it, we were in hysterics (probably a combination of laughter and fear)! We were piled into this plane and were literally sat on top of each other. The ascent to 12,000 feet took about 10mins and it was actually quite good cos we could see all around.
I wasn’t actually that nervous during the ascent. However, as soon as they opened the door, I completely lost my nerve and thought 'what the hell am I doing jumping out of a plane!'. Luckily I wasn't nearest the door so I didn't have to go first, I went third. We all had to jump in quite quick succession so I didn't have much time to think about it (also I was strapped on to the instructor so I didn't have a lot of choice about it either)! He told me to swing my legs out the plane, he pulled my head back and out we went. They don't have to push you cos you kind of just go with them.
Now, when you jump out the plane you are meant to form a bow shape with your stomach facing the ground and your legs and arms point upwards. However, I jumped and I was thinking 'bow shape?? How the heck am I meant to do that when I've just jumped out of a plane! Forming a bow shape was the last thing on my mind! My arms and legs were flapping around and we were rolling everywhere cos it was my instinct to grab on to something.
To top it off, the strap on my hat and goggles broke when we jumped out so I had to hold it on, which was very difficult. The instructor didn't realise and kept trying to grab my arms up and I kept grabbing back on to my head. He thought I was just being weird and liked holding my head, but he did appologise when I explained to him later. I would have just let go but I had no idea if I needed the hat and goggles and I thought that they would hurt someone if they fell to the ground. It panicked me quite a lot cos they never covered this in the training!
Throughout all of this, there was a lady videoing me and trying to get me to put my head up for the dvd! I must admit that I was quite relieved when he pulled the chute and I really liked it after that. He explained all the sights to me on the way down and it was really quite relaxing. Well, it was relaxing when the harness wasn't making funny noises. It kept clicking and I thought that I was gonna drop off it.I
was allowed to get my own camera out after he pulled the chute and do some videoing of my own, which was good. I will try to get those on to the blog. I really want to load my dvd on, cos everyone was literally crying on the floor with laughter when they watched it! Trevor reckoned that I nearly knocked the instructor out when we jumped out the plane and I was flapping around! Even the staff at the skydiving centre found it hilarious. They also said that I handled it very well considering the situation with my hat and I smiled all the way through the jump! The dvd shows me landing and laughing. However, I don't realise that my goggles are diagonally across my face until someone moves them for me suring my interview - whoops!
All in all, skydiving was a fantastic experience but I'm sure if I will be rushing to do it again. Anyway - I don't think it would ever top that experience!