Ahhhhhhhhhhhhhh… That’s what it felt like to finally jump again. On May 30, 2009, it had been 1,309 days since my last skydive (that’s just over 3.5 years if you’re not quick with mod 365 arithmetic). Since I’m hostage to Chicago this summer without my girlfriend, friends, family, or other hobbies to distract me, I decided it was a good time to start jumping again. And what better place than Skydive Chicago (SDC), a huge dropzone about an hour and a half southwest of the Windy City.
Planning for this, I showed up at SDC with my rig (Javelin Odyssey and PD Spectre) on my first full weekend here, but unfortunately it needed to be sent away for its 4 year AAD service, and then a main inspection and reserve repack. So I had to jump a rental rig until mine came back from its service.
For the first skydive that weekend, I jumped with Biff Bolen of SDC, one of the most laid back jumpers I’ve met (that’s saying a lot, since skydivers are a relaxed, generally hippy crowd). And he generously offered me free video, too! Here’s the jump, after I did some editing in Final Cut Express 4.
Although my exit was perfect (putting it modestly), you can see that I’m porpoising at a few points during the skydive. My track was a little unstable but basically on heading. Flying your body is not as easy as it looks. I don’t think it was too bad considering the 43 month hiatus.
I jumped at SDC a few times since this video, but not with anybody flying camera (or I would’ve posted footage of my much better and less embarrassing subsequent jumps instead!) The pro shop just called me and said my rig is back from Europe and ready to go, so I can’t wait to jump my Odyssey again.
Skydive Carolina, here I come again!
P.S.: As I browsed my iTunes library for the right music to accompany the video, I finally decided on Orbital’s “One Perfect Sunshine” track from their Blue Album. This got me to thinking about Shaun Kime, my good friend from high school who introduced me (among other things) to Orbital and Pink Floyd. Funny how, as the years go past, you remember the ways certain people influenced you. Tip of the hat to Shaun, and congrats again on getting married.