For my 30th Birthday I did a tandem skydive. It was a scary but amazing experience. I love my photo and get the DVD out at any opportunity. And here is an opportunity to show you my photo!
After having had children, I am not sure I could take the risk of jumping out of a plane. We had been thinking about taking big man indoor skydiving, but wondered if he might be a little to young for this. This weekend we took him, and he proved that he wasn't too young, and that he was a lot braver than his mummy.
The trip was arranged through Red Letter Days, and took place at Milton Keynes Airkix. We started by filling out a disclaimer and then had a briefing which went though hand signals, as you can't hear due to the noise of the wind. The instructor advised that the best thing to do was relax. (Easier said than done.) We got kitted out in jumpsuits, ear plugs, goggles and helmets, then went up to the vertical wind tunnel. We needed to hire special "flying shoes" for big man. To you and me that is some lace up trainers, but big man thought they had some special properties!
I decided that it was probabley best if big man went in first incase me or my husband freaked out and put him off! He was amazing as was our instructor. They lowered the wind slightly (or he would have blown off!) and he held him in the tunnel. Big man had a massive smile from ear to ear. He flipped over a couple of times, but it all went well. He came out beaming and ready to go in again.
As soon as I lent in, memories of my own skydive came back to me. Being in a 110 mph wind tunnel really does feel like free-falling. Last time I did it, I had a professional strapped onto my back. This time I was trying to fly on my own! Adrenalin ran through my body, and breathing isn't easy. Nothing about it is easy! The instructor kept telling me to straighten my legs - I honestly thought they were straight, but looking at the DVD, they were nowhere near! The instructor generally had to hold some part of me, to stop me flying off into the side/performing some unplanned stunts!
On the second time into the tunnel the instructor asks if you want them to take you flying. You pay extra for this (which goes to the instructor) but it is worth every penny. For a start, the instructor is holding onto you, so you are much more relaxed. Secondly, it is fun! You go flying in circles up and down the tunnel, and how I didn't hit the sides I am not sure.
We had an absolutely fabulous afternoon and big man can't wait to take his flying certificate into school. You can take children from the age of 5, and as they don't seem to have any fear, the children we watched doing it were really good. It is not a cheap day out - but it is one you and your little one will remember. So if you are stuck with ideas of birthday presents for your children, and don't want any more plastic in the house then why not consider having a go yourself. I can't wait to take middle man in a few years time.
We were given a family ticket by Red Letter Days through their family and friends employee draw. They have not asked me to blog about the event, but it was such good fun, I wanted to!