Sunday, April 7, 2013

US Trip 2013 - Take 2; AFF in Lodi; 'things ain't always as easy'

I have spent last few days together with Jordan and Faith at the world famous dropzone in Lodi, CA. I have to say all the jumpers and the crew have been really nice to us sharing lots of knowledge and helping us to understand as much as we can in such a short period of time. The weather was mostly good, sometimes a bit rainy and windy. I did my tandem jump and 4 of my 7 AFF jumps, although I stopped at the 3rd level which I had to repeat.

My friends already finished their AFF and Jordan has another 7-8 solo jumps after today. For me the situation is a bit more complicated. I have to admit; skydiving is way more difficult then I thought. I definitely have some problems to relax while falling but I wasn't doing bad. Still deployed my chute on time, performed my tasks and landed at the dropzone. My last fourth jump during first day of AFF wasn't ideal, after my second turn I had a spinner and got stressed and de-arched a bit my body position but managed to pull on 5500 feet and landed safely. Even though my instructor would pass me after repeating the jump, Bill, the owner of the dropzone, wasn't quite happy with me. I heard he is quite character but now I had a chance to experience it on my own and it wasn't quite nice.

Basically I heard I am a climber and this is not for me, I am too tense and so on. Well I am just a student and it feels like I have been picked for a stupid reason. I did 6 min of practice at the iFly wind tunnel in San Francisco working on my AFF elements and it felt pretty solid. I just have to remember to arch and relax and enjoy my flight. 

Bill is pretty negative but I will try to talk to him tomorrow after weekend and if the answer is still no, I will have to finish my course at the different dropzone. It has been pretty demotivating and depressing experience and it made me question myself and my motivations. It is not easy to stay positive all the time. Last few days I felt pretty down actually and it was hard to motivate myself to do anything. I will do my best and I know I can skydive. To have a friend here like Jordan is also a huge support.

Yesterday Nathan Huerta came do Lodi together with his girlfriend Brittany to do their first tandem jump and afterwards we went together to the park to do some slacklining. We had a 350'ish longline and 22m rodeoline with around 6m of sag. Both lines rigged with Type-18 - it is such an amazing and dynamic line! I had bunch of fun slacklining, skateboarding and practicing my handstands. I know I did not have enough of these things during last couple months because I did not give myself even a minute of rest. Rage full on, all time ;) At the end I enjoyed some beautiful colorful sunset and drove back to the dropzone. So, tomorrow is the day of truth but I am trying not to worry too much - if not that's not the end of the world ;)

Peace & SlackOn!

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