Ah! Skydiving! It was high on my list of potential hobbies, until I actually tried it. A few years ago, one of our dear readers invited me to a tandem jump (hi Charlie!). That’s one of the perks of drawing a comic in this particular niche, I suppose.
Don’t get me wrong, it was AWESOME. The rush of jumping out of the plane, the free fall, the goofing around with the other skydivers … it’s hard to describe the feeling, and I can imagine it must be so much cooler still when you’re not strapped with your butt to some other dude’s crotch.
But when the chute opened, things took a turn for the worse. At first it was nice to cruise along and watch the landscape from above. But soon, I started to feel motion sickness. What can I say, it’s something I have dealt with all my life, and one of the reasons why I’m not a mariner or aviator. I barely made it to the ground without puking. And the last minute or two were sheer torture.
That’s not to say that I don’t want to try it again some day. Many things deserve a second shot. But, although I know it’s rather safe, as long as you do everything right, now that I’m a father, I have decided to postpone it until further notice. I’ve never been an adrenaline junkie, but now I’m even more risk averse than before. Or maybe that’s just a sign that I’m getting old, haha!
It’s a funny observation that I made, but to me it seems that there are an awful lot of pilots out there that are afraid of heights and/or would never dream of skydiving. Now I’m not sure if Sally and Julio were aware of that, or if they bought Chuck’s present with only the best intentions. But I think I’ve got a hunch.
Skydiving seems to attract a certain type of people. But it’s big on my “things to do before I die” list, even though I’d only be tandem-skydiving. I seem to be putting it off though. One of my excuses is that I get motion sick easily. A friend of mine once went tandem skydiving, got really sick on the way up and puked on the way down. Of course, the air flow then transported her lunch back to the poor instructor… Seems like skydiving instructor is a risky job in more ways than people know!
I have flown my share of “reasonably airworthy” airplanes and helicopters in the past. I don’t even want to elaborate on those stories on this website since our mission is to “attract” folks to aviation, not scare them. But here is what my brother did with some of the stories I told him……