Luckily my head was clear on Friday morning ready for my 12,000ft skydive on my 30th birthday! I was so excited and not at all nervous, as you can see from the pics. As it was paid for by all you lovely people, I decided to pay for a personal cameraman to come with us, which was actually very good value as they would film me from getting on my suit to landing, as well as taking lots of stills too.
There were 3 jumpers, 3 instructors and 2 cameramen in the plane. There are no seats, the fuselage is cramped and we all sit on the floor. The when we reached 9,000ft the first guy got ready, then the sliding door opened and I couldn't believe the wind pressure rush in to the plane, and it was cold. They tumbled out and the plane lifted a few feet with the weight loss. The door slid closed until we climbed to 12,000ft. When the door opened, Jeff my instructor shuffled us to the edge, I was completely hanging out the plane with my legs pulled back underneath and my hands on my chest straps. It was a quick smile for the camera, then head back, a quick "Happy Birthday" in my ear from Jeff and we somersaulted out! wwwwaaahhhhhaaaayyyyyyyy. It was awesome, a feeling I just cannot describe, but certainly the best adrenalin rush I have ever had. And I have doubts that anything on earth could get that feeling of freedom. The freefall was about 45secs (apparently) and the controlled decent a few minutes.
Unfortunately when we got down something had gone wrong with the movie camera before we jumped out and none of the freefall was captured. I was absolutely gutted. The saving grace was that I did get 60+ amazing still pictures, and I'm sure you'll agree well worth it.
With a smile the size of New Zealand, we had some lunch before heading back to Queenstown. We both certainly had holiday blues and did not want to return to work. I wish life was like that everyday. For some it is. Jeff told me that he jump 5-15 times a day and had over 12,000 jumps under him. Now that's impressive. I was in safe hands.