So, when I started writing my Bucketlist, the first thing I wrote down was “Skydive”. I think that is what most people write down amongst the top ten things? “What to do before I die? Well I have to do something crazy, right?” And skydiving IS crazy! Throw yourself out of a perfectly good airplane…. that is what they say, the “whuffos” (that is you, if you have not done a skydive yet).
Anyways. I thought a tandem jump was the way to go. People I knew who had done it, did it that way. Heck, I had no idea that this was an actual sport that normal people was doing in their everyday life?! My friend and I said that we were going to push eachother and do this together. I nagged my friend. My friend had excuses every single time. I got sick and tired of my friend. At this point I had been reading up a lot about skydiving, so I thought: “I am going to do this alone, and I am going to do the course so I can jump myself to really piss off my friend.” So I did. Piss him off….
The theory for the course was held during the winter, at Skydive Umeå. We were a group of people that met about 10 times for 2 hours at each occassion. In between these meetings, you had to do a lot of self studies at home. Then came the spring. And we were ready for the real deal. In theory that is… literally.
We went to Skydive Stockholm to do our jumps, because the snow was still on the ground in Umeå. The weather was really bad the first couple of days. So we were doing more training on the ground. You lay down on these skateboards and pretend being in the air, throwing your chute. It was so much fun! You look ridiculous….
I´ll rest my case..
We couldn´t jump because of the weather. But we could drink! So we did… a lot.
Hungover in my bunk bed.
Time for some skydiving
After rolling around on the ground for 2 days, the sun suddenly did an appearance. So now they started throwing people off the plane! I was the last one in my group so I had to sit there. Waiting. Had the time to get super nervous. Had to pee like 15 times. Got even more nervous. Asked one million questions to my friends who got to jump before me. Got freakishly nervous. Had to pee some more.
Friends jumping. Me questioning.
Then it started to get really close for it to be my turn.
“Pull yourself together man!” Me, trying to convince everyone that I am the calm one…
I got on the plane. And I felt really sick. I was actually worried that I was going to throw up when I left the plane. This is how it is: You sit there, in the far back of the plane. The 20-something people in front of you just magically disappears from this big hole on the side of the plane. You actually stop breathing for a while. The two instructors you are with tell you it is time. You do not want to do this, but the instructors are there for your sake, so you can not really disappoint them. You get outside the door. Your holding on to a plane that is 14000 ft above ground. The strong winds from the propeller pushes you back. It is really hard holding on, but you think about your training and lets go….
How does it feel?
The second you let go you feel unbeatable. The adrenaline rushes through your body and everything goes in slow motion. You have the time to think so much! You do what you are supposed to be doing: checking your altimeter, fake pulling your chute. The two instructors, hanging on to you on each side, look happy. Really happy! And you realize that so do you! You love this! It looks like you are standing still in the middle of the air. Free as a bird. No worries. You can fly! Except for that you are not. You are falling. Continue to check that altimeter! 😉
You pull your parachute, get extremely happy that it works, glide back down to the ground and do this really embarrassing landing. And everybody is cheering for you! Well, in my case I got picked up by a car since they thought I died because I was laying down on the ground, laughing like a crazy person for 5 minutes. So they got to cheer for me later when they knew that I was okay. Did not think about that…. I was just ecstatic.
Last ground training before getting on the plane.
Happily ever after:-D
Why continue doing this crazy stunt?
When you are back down on the ground again. You are filled with adrenaline and endorphins. This was the best thing you have ever done in your life. How could you not have done this sooner? After a couple of minutes, the shakiness in your hands start to fade and you do not speak so loudly anymore. At this point you are probably starting to think about the dangers with the sport. And that it is probably not that smart to do this again. You survived this one time. Maybe you will die on the next jump? About the same time you start to have these thoughts, the instructors track you down. They say: “Okay, we have to do some ground training before the next jump in a couple of minutes”.
You do not have time to think it through. They are happy, they are there for you, you follow them because they make you feel great about yourself.
After 10 jumps, your course is (hopefully) finished, you get to jump alone or with your friends. Experience crazy new things! New moves, new gear… You kind of want to try it all. And the rest just comes naturally. So yes, I continued because I felt obligated to continue my course. There were so many people who sacrified their sparetime to help me become a skydiver… But after about 5 jumps, I was not scared anymore. I was hooked. I did not do it for anyone else. It is the greatest feeling in the world being in middle of nothing. Feel like a bird. Seeing the earth from above.
It is hard to explain. You need to try this!
Starting to skydive is something that completely changed me as a person. I am not afraid of anything anymore. So I will definitely give skydiving 5 out of 5 stars!
Coming in for landing.
Can you put words to your feelings when you tried skydiving? Please tell me!:-D