It's an undeniable glitch in my programming that every now and then I creep out of my safe little cocoon and want to try something totally out of character. I tell myself how much fun it will be, that it'll be totally fine and then once I start down that path I'm pondering "what in the world was I thinking"!
Such was the case Sunday in Canada. I had talked to K3 about doing this. Surprisingly, she agreed and so I booked the activity. It wasn't until we got there that she started to feel a little trepidation. I was fine... TOG was fine. They explain the equipment and take you on this little training course, the bunny hill, they call it. Everyone feels confident and then they take you to the top. As we started down, I found myself in the unique position of comforting K3 and urging her on and doing some big time positive affirmations about getting myself through the course in one piece. I told TOG afterward that the only way I got through the first few lines was that I couldn't see another way to get down from the course! 100 feet up in a tree on a two foot platfom with no ladder? The only way off is to slide down a steel cable at 45 miles per hour? Whose idea was this?
What am I talking about? Zip lining! Have you ever zipped? No? It's very high octane, at least for me it was. The two things that bothered me the most were 1) you have to go against every natural instinct when they tell you to step off a platform 150 feet in the air. Self preservation is a distant memory! 2) If you catch a crosswind or shift your weight, you may spin and come in backwards. This give you that dizzy carnival ride feeling in your neck if you're going fast enough. (Oh, you're going fast enough!)
Now, there are pictures. Just remember that when you're in a zip harness, gravity takes hold, all your weight shifts downward in sheer terror and your butt looks bigger. It's all smoke and mirrors. Trust me, my butt is much smaller. And the camera adds pounds too. Just so we're clear!
This is one of the shorter zips. But at the platform behind me in the trees, you step off over a rather steep gully. Don't look down! I became a pro at looking at the tree tops!
This one's a blur, because a) K3 was shaking from her ride and b) I was moving fast and hadn't hit the brake yet (the red block on the line in front of me, which keeps you from coming in for a landing at 40 miles per hour).
This was early on, and I'm still trying to show K3 how fun it is. Note the lack of commitment on her face!
This is right after the longest line (which you see behind us. It also has the longest landing pad (because you go so fast). Just remember, I am much thinner than it looks. Very thin. And note that K3 finally has her confidence! She actually didn't build enough speed and rolled backwards on the longest line. The guide went out to get her. Because she survived it, she's now worry free! (TOG said you should have seen her eyes when she started to roll back out!)
For the live movie of what it's like to zip, you can log on here! Then come back and tell me how excited you are to try this!
Yours in zip-line safety,
PS~ As we were leaving for the top, I held up the party while I grabbed my inhaler. Turns out, it was a really good idea. It was in the 90s and muggy. Still the lungs cooperated so I can't complain! I think they may have cooperated out of sheer terror. "Look, we're fine... just get us out of here!"