After I turned 30, I promised myself I would dedicate the next decade of my life to adventure. Tasting new foods, traveling into uncharted territory, utilizing my kitchen in an attempt to cook and jumping out of an airplane two miles above ground at speeds up to 120 miles per hour.
Not solo, of course. Your first experience skydiving is a tandem jump, meaning a professional skydiver is harnessed to your back. The instructor wears the parachute, not you. Talk about trust.
I so generously received the opportunity to skydive from a close friend for my 31st birthday. Naturally, like most sane individuals, I postponed scheduling the death-defying adventure for a few months. I finally got the nerve to call Skydive Tandem Greenville to set my skydiving date, which was available sooner than desired.
And before I knew it, I was flipping through 25 pages (front and back) of a liability contract signing my life away (literally).
Well, there’s no turning back, I thought to myself as my instructor approached me with my skydiving harness and a ready-to-place-your-life-in-my-hands?, raised-eyebrow grin.
After spending a little less than five minutes mirroring the motions of my instructor BG on how to jump out of the plane, he assured me we were “good-to-go.” I had already forgotten my left from right and questioned whether he could see my heart bursting from my chest.
“Time to fly!” BG exclaimed. And we boarded the plane with another set of tandem jumpers along with our pilot. Five of us in a plane with one seat. Though, this was the least of my worries considering what I had signed up for. I was seated on the floor, knees to chest beside the door, which stayed open as our plane lifted off the runway.
BG eventually shut the door and our plane raised 10 and a half thousand feet above ground, in what seemed to take an eternity. BG opened the door and motioned for me to turn around and strap my harness onto his. We were jumping first. It was time.