Robert Campbell Mrs.Overly ENGL 1301.54 11/1/2005 Assignment: Ch.
3. Descriptive Writing—“The Body Farm” p. 139, #1. Write an essay in which you describe something that most people would find repulsive or frightening. Skydiving It was an ordinary day in June when a few friends and I decided that we wanted to do something that we thought was exhilarating, so we went skydiving. What is skydiving you might ask yourself? Skydiving is exactly what it sounds like, the act of jumping or falling out of an aircraft and parachuting to the earth.
Some people might call you crazy or even think that it is repulsive or frightening, but those adventurous enough to participate will never forget what it is like and will want to do it over and over again. To us, skydiving is a vacation. The morning that we decided to go skydiving was a time that I will never forget. I awoke that Saturday and began to think about what I was going to do; after an idea came to me I called my friend Raquel and Julie. When they picked up the phone and heard of what I was asking of them they both were apprehensive and nervous, but after talking to them for a while they both decided that we would go.
Around 12:30 I picked them up and we went to get something to eat at McDonalds, before heading out to Skydive Spaceland in Rosharon. I have to admit that upon arriving at Skydive Spaceland my friends and I began to wonder what had gotten into us. Upon our arrival we first went into the plane hanger and then to a place they call “Manifest”, which is where you began to sign your life away. Filling out the papers took my friends and I approximately 30 to 40 minutes to complete, and this paper work was basically legal documents that say if you are injured or hurt in anyway shape or form in the dive that the are not liable for anything.
When we were through signing the papers and paying the fees, we were then ready to take the class required for the dive. In order to skydive you must take a 45 minute class that explains the important things required to prepare for jumping. Probably the two most important instructions they teach you, are what altitude you must pull the parachute at, which is 5500 feet, and the saying “fly fifty five to stay alive”. Another thing that was also important was the arch of your back when first exiting the plane. This was necessary because it forces your body to flip over causing you to fall in a controlled motion.
In the class my friends and I had to practice this motion by squatting and quickly going to a standing position while arching our backs, it insured that we understood the motion. Following the class was over we then began to suit up into royal blue jump suit, which look like astronaut space suits. Once suited up we began to board into the aircraft, which was a twin engine plane only big enough to seat about 25 people, and reeked of gasoline. Before this point in my life I had never rode in a plane, so it was going to be a first. We boarded the plane and began to seatbelt ourselves in next to our tandem jump instructors.
Then the plane began to take off and at this time I was pretty nervous but my adrenaline was pumping so fast I did not know what to think. The plane ride took about 15 minutes to reach the appropriate altitude that we needed to exit the plane, and the time we rode with the cargo bay door wide open. When we reached the appropriate altitude I was the first in line to exit the aircraft, which was scary because I had not watched anyone else exit before me. Upon exiting the aircraft you hear a loud sound “whoosh”, and a cold wind comes over your body. Then the most exhilarating feeling came over me and I was having a blast.
We had to do a number of things that we learned in our class, while we were up in the air. Such as, checking you altimeter at different altitudes and shaking the camera mans hand, and over all just having fun. And then at 5500 feet it was time to pull the parachute. There is a misconception that when the parachute is pulled that the person is jerked up from the parachute deploying; but this is not true because it is an optical illusion due to the fact that the camera man videoing the free fall continues to fall, therefore making it look as the he was jerked upward.
After the parachute was deployed, there is an 8 to 10 minute descent, after landing on the ground I was thankful but at the same time my adrenaline was pumping and I was ready to do it again. And the video camera observed the whole scene. Although some people might call you crazy or even think that sky diving is repulsive or frightening, but to those who venture to share in this act we call skydiving will never forget what it is like and will want to do it over and over again. Skydiving is something that I enjoy and plan to do at least a few more time in my life. I have to say that it was the funniest experiences in my life.