Close your eyes.. and think skydiving.. What is in your mind?
The airplane, often seen from a distance, but now so up close and personal. The ride up, in the beginning seemed to be that last slow walk down the green mile, but later becomes an unbearable delay from your own sweet release. The open door at altitude, the doorway into another world. Freefall, where you finally spread your wings and fly. Pull time, when it all gets serious. The canopy, is it there and is it square. The ride down, can this thing do a cart wheel? The landing pattern, downwind, base, final.. then.. wait for it… wait for it… FLARE!
Yeah, thats how a skydive works in my mind. But “skydiving” transcends the “skydive”. After all, every tandem student has done a “skydive”, but do they understand “skydiving”? So if not just the skydive, what else is there? Well, a lot! Not the least of which is the dropzone’s atmosphere itself!
The friends, the students, the Coaches and Instructors. It’s a beautiful spring day spent waiting in the shade, casual chatter all about. Idle time spent learning about aviation from the pilot and teaching new students about the skydive, explaining the difference along the way between fact and and your own opinion. Enjoying the day at the dropzone, not skydiving, just relaxing.. and waiting for the skydive.
It’s not easy. It’s took me three years to get used to it and another year to learn to enjoy it. It’s hard to understand, much less appreciate this part of skydiving in the beginning – when it’s all about the skydive – but now, a fine spring day, spent outside with friends.. that’s enough to make me smile any day of the week – of course, getting some altitude at the end of that wait is great too!