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Old 09-19-2004, 11:53 PM #13 (permalink)
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Join Date: 2004
City: NW of Toronto
State: On
Country: CAN
Diagnosed: 10/2003
Interest: I have been diagnosed with ALS.
Posts: 8,028
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♥ Al Al is offline
Moderator
Forum Moderator

Al's Avatar
Join Date: 2004
City: NW of Toronto
State: On
Country: CAN
Diagnosed: 10/2003
Interest: I have been diagnosed with ALS.
Posts: 8,028
Al is on a distinguished road
Default Skydiving

Well folks let me tell you it was a beautiful day for an airplane ride. From 4000 ft you could see the CN Tower from about 15 miles south of Wasaga Beach. Not much wind but when you put your left foot out on the step at 80 miles per hour and try to grasp the strut. (The thing that sort of holds the wing on for you non pilots) with your left hand (the one that is weakened most by ALS) well interesting things happen. First you tumble backwards. That's ok because your chute opens automatically because of the static line attached to the floor of the airplane. A bit disorienting at first but ok. Then you say to yourself. Should have worn the gloves I brought. Temp is a little colder up here at 80 miles an hour. Damn hands stiffen up in the cold. Have to remember that next time(?) still manage to grab the toggles that are used to steer and they don't want first time jumpers doing anything too fancy so the turns weren't too bad, very gentle turns. Great view and it was fabulous. As good as my first solo in a Cessna 152 30 years ago. So after hanging around for 3-5 minutes in the air it was time for the landing. To flare you have to pull these toggles from over your head down as far as you can reach. Not as graceful a landing as I wanted. Did land on my feet but toppled forward and have a bruised knee for it. But I will tell you without sounding like a wimp that every muscle in my body is aching tonight. But I would do it again tomorrow. It was worth it. I wish I had done it sooner so I wouldn't hurt so much now but a red wine is easing some of the pain. I know I'm not as far progressed as some of the other folks here but I would have to say if you ever wanted to do something and thought you might not be able to do it. Go for it Try it. It doesn't cost anything to ask and you might be surprised what you can still do. As for telling the skydive people about ALS it is best to not mention it until after you have done it. The instructor just about crapped when I told him about it after. He had asked the 3 of us jumping why we were there and wanted to jump. We told him that we would tell him when we got down. He didn't know what ALS was or Lou Gehrigs disease so we had to go through the whole scenario for him. I think he thought I was nuts but he shook my hand and said congratulations and commended me for my courage. Kind of made a nice ending to a perfect if not textbook jump. I'd really like to thank my friend Terry for getting me off my butt and making me realize that I can still be productive and still do some of the things that I have put off for years. His dad is about my age and lives in Newfoundland and has ALS but a bit worse than me. Kind of long winded but as you might guess I'm still pretty excited about it. So I think it is about time to crash for the night and hope tomorrow brings some limber muscles. Night All.
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