The apprehension I felt as I watched those before me disappear out the open door of the plane, was soon replaced by exhilaration as my tandem partner edged us into the opening and we plunged out of the plane down into the clouds below. The ice of the cloud rain bit into my face and my bare legs, the air was rushing at us as we free fall for seconds, I am deep breathing, holding my teeth and mouth together as I remembered in the plane, what if my false teeth fall out????
Skydiving out of a plane? Was never on my bucket list, but each morning my bike ride would take me to Stuart Park, I could see the jumpers getting ready or watch them as they fell out of the sky and floated to the ground with their parachutes twirling above me. I made a promise to myself before I leave Corrimal Beach, I am going to jump out of a plane and skydive to the ground.
Our bus took us to Illawarra Regional Airport at Albion Park and we went straight out to our plane waiting for us on the tarmac. I waited until nearly last to board, but soon realised last on, first off. NOOOOOO. Okay, girl, grit your teeth you are not pulling out now, even though, early in the morning I had secretly hoped for rain to abandon the dive.
Two others went out before me and Tony, my tandem partner, from Skydive Australia said right let’s do this. We edged our way to the opening, my legs dropped over and out the opening, Tony pulled my head back gently and we were away.
Free-falling was a sensational experience, the wind and ice from the clouds are ripping into me, but because of the cloud cover, I couldn’t see what was below. I watch as the clouds race before me.
Within seconds Tony had pulled the chute open, tapped me on the shoulder, which was the signal to spread my arms to balance ourselves and we were floating gently above the ocean off Wollongong. We floated and twirled and Tony pulled left, then right on the direction cord and we went roller coasting and see-sawing a couple of times and ever so gently we were descending to the beach off Stuart Park.
For landing our training was to lift your feet and legs so they were parallel with the ground and Tony took us in for a perfect landing in the sand.
He pulled me to a standing position, my legs were like jelly and I wobbled a bit and Tony steadied me.
The day I jumped out of a plane, and tandem skydived was one of the most amazing and exhilarating things that I have ever done.