On Friday, reveilles and I took a day off from work to go skydiving at Jumptown in Orange, MA. It was a beautiful autumn day, the sky was clear and it was just a little cool. After signing a waiver in which I gave up all of my rights just short of my firstborn, I went up in a Cessna. After getting to altitude, I was attached to a jumpmaster who would be in control for the descent. They opened the door of the plane, I had to stick my foot out on a step and look straight down about 10,000 feet to the ground below. The next thing I knew, I was in freefall, traveling over 100 miles per hour. It was exhilarating and beautiful, looking over New England's fall foliage at its peak. After about 30 seconds of freefall, the parachute was opened and I descended slowly to the ground.
I don't think skydiving is a hobby I want to take up (too expensive), but the jump I did was a lot of fun and I'd be willing to do it again. Since we went on a Friday, things were slower at Jumptown, so we had time to talk to the staff and the people who belong to their jump club. They were all very friendly and it was obvious that they were all one big family. More importantly, since we were jumping that day, they made us feel like we were part of their family, too. I'd highly recommend Jumptown for anyone who wants to try skydiving.
Click on any picture for a larger version. Here's me leaving the plane:
Me in freefall. The body of water in the upper right is the Quabbin Reservoir. The tiny patch of green in the triangle made by the runways is the landing zone:
Me parachuting back to the ground:
Safely on the ground with reveilles:
I have a video I hope to get online in a few days.