Thursday, June 26, 2008

On the Wings of a Bird

Day 107
When I woke up I was disappointed to see that it was cloudy. When the booking office opened up at 8 I spoke to the girl there. She told me that the weather was meant to clear, that I should just give it some time. I went inside to watch a movie to kill some time.

By 11 am the sky was mostly clear and I went back to book my trip. While I was doing that I found out that if I booked more than one exclusion that I would get a 5% discount on both of them. I like the word discount. I asked the girl if canyoning was fun, she told me that it was. Mel, one of the British girls I had watched movies with the night before was already booked. I decided to go ahead and book it as well. How scary could walking along the bottom of a canyon and occasionally jumping into the water be?

About a hour later a group of us, including Mel, were picked up at the hostel and taken about 3 minutes to downtown Interlaken. There were 6 people going up all together and in the van we were told to pick our guides. No one could pick, I think its a bit awkward to just point and say “I'm going with you” anyway. Kinda like picking teams for recess. In the end we picked names out of a pile. I ended up with one of the younger guys who also happened to be incredibly attractive. I would really like to tell you his name, however I was so nervous about the whole ordeal that I completely forgot it. For the purpose of this blog we will call him RHTSG, really hot tall Swiss guy.

The way this works is that the passenger is attached to the front of the driver, the parachute is placed behind you. You both then run a short distance and the parachute picks you up. Very quickly you are flying.

Just a few steps into our run I felt my feet leave the ground and the parachute pull us back. RHTSG told me to keep running, I don't know how though, my feet were already a good foot off of the ground. In no time we were in the air and over Interlaken. We were climbing higher and higher. The ride was smooth, but I kept waiting for us to suddenly drop. This was seriously pee your pants scary, but also so fabulously wonderful all at the same time.

I had been able to bring my camera up with my by attaching it to the rigging. I was too petrified though to take my hands off of the straps, not that they would have done any good if we fell out of the sky. I am really happy that I went ahead and paid the sort expensive price of having RHTSG take pictures instead.

For almost half an hour we floated over the city, the mountains and the lake. At one point a bird even flew beneath us. That was really cool. RHTSG kept asking me how my stomach was doing. To my surprise it was perfectly fine. He then asked if I liked roller coasters and I said yes, because, well I do. I just haven't been on one in forever. All the sudden he started doing all sorts of turns and spirals in the air. I shut my eyes and hung on for dear life. My stomach was no longer happy with me. Even once the turns were over I didn't get back to normal. I was actually pretty happy when it was time to land, I didn't want to puke in the sky, that would be really embarrassing.

When we got close to the ground RHTSG told me to stand up, I tried, but my legs wouldn't listen and I ended up in a heap under the ropes that connected the parashoot. Once I was untangled RGTSG gave me the memory card from the camera with my pictures. I was so happy that I had bought them, especially since I was unable to take any of my own. I checked them out on my camera right way and was really happy with them. I thanked RGTSG and wandered dizzily back to the hostel with Mel.

My stomach was pretty much livid with me for the rest of the day. I tried Dramamine, eating, not eating, water, everything. I even tried reading in a hammock. That just made me feel like I was about to fall over. The only thing that sort of helped was lying in front of the tv watching movies.

When I no longer felt like I was going to puke at any moment I went to the supermarket and picked up some cottage cheese, a melon and some prosciutto. I figured that if my stomach couldn't be made happy, at least my taste buds could. I tried to get a half melon, but when I went to pay for it I was told that it was just an example and that I had to go back and get a full melon. Everyone in line laughed at the silly tourist. I guess thats just what I have to be sometimes.

After watching a few movies with some equally lazy people I headed off to sleep early. I was going to need all of my energy for canonying, whatever it was.

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