This is an ongoing series reflecting on my first trip overseas to Bali in 2008. You can read the entire series here.
The harness gripped my thighs tightly, and my gloved hands clenched into white-knuckled fists around the cords. As the engine revved, I strode forward and felt my feet lift away from the powder-fine sand. I sailed off into the bright blue sky, looking down upon the blinding white beach – so this is what flying feels like. An utter sense of calm comes over me, and all my cares in the world seem so far away. All that’s important is the cool tropical breeze fluttering at my face, warm sunshine on my shoulders, and the magical view from high in the sky.
Our next destination after our morning of white-water rafting was Nusa Dua beach, not for sunbaking and swimming, but for parasailing! This was a solo parasail off the beach, so I was a little wary given I had never parasailed before. However it seemed like the company had a great set-up, and that everything was quite easy.
I stepped into the harness attached to the large parachute and was given 2 gloves – one red and one blue. I was told by the Balinese staff member to put the red glove on my right hand and the blue glove on my left. He then gave me all the instructions I needed – hold onto the parachute cords, and watch the beach for his signals in order to steer the parachute. When he waved the red flag, I was to pull down hard with my right hand, and when he waved a blue flag, the same on my left. Super easy for someone like me who always has to think for a bit before I can decide which is my right hand and which is my left!
Everything went without a hitch, and I really enjoyed it. The view of Bali from up so high was wonderful, and I seemed to swoop and soar above the turquoise ocean with ease, before all too soon I had to descend. However, our Big Day Out wasn’t over yet – more coming soon!
Have you been paragliding before? I’d love to hear about your experience in the comments!