On Thursday May 14, I was invited by some of my motorcycle riding buddies to join a ride scheduled for Saturday, May 16. I asked who was leading the ride and where they were going to go.
Those questions led to further probing… these guys were going to ride to an “open” Maryland county and do things that would make me feel very …
… uncomfortable: socialize with disregard of physical distancing recommendations and not wear face coverings. Also, I know the person leading the ride. He rides at least 10mph above the posted speed limit, which makes me feel very tense. It is exhausting to ride so fast and have to keep up. Riding a motorcycle is supposed to be all about “riding and having fun.” It is no fun when the ride is fast and loose.
Later that day, another buddy called me to ask if I wanted to go skydiving. “B” and I have gone skydiving together for over 30 years, and we have probably over 6,000 jumps together.
He is a pro in all respects, including being a skilled skydiving instructor.
The skydiving would be just the two of us, plus our pilot.
Even though it sounds more dangerous, the danger is all relative. For a skilled D-level skydiver like me with 13,357 jumps under my silks, the risk of injury while skydiving is about equal to the risk of injury when riding my Harley. Why? I am more careful and watchful for my personal safety in these activities; I wear proper gear always; I participate sober (always); and I participate within the limits of my skill and capabilities.
I sat down with The Spouse and discussed the options.
It was then that Spouse presented me with a gift he has been holding for a while: a new Raptor 2 vertical jumpsuit, fitted for me by size. It has windproof spandex articulations on the back, torso and arms sides, hips, above the knees and crotch, and included all the technology (barometer/altimeter, GPS, lights, sirens… well, not that 🙂 )
Wow…just wow. This suit will make me FLY like I haven’t flown before!
So that made the decision — let’s jump!
I called “B” and made arrangements.
On Saturday, I pulled on my gift Corcoran Jump Boots, rode my Harley to BWI airport, and made my way to the private side of the airport. “B” had already checked in, registered our flight, and we loaded up.
We flew north to Churchville, Maryland. The weather was P-E-R-F-E-C-T for skydiving: clear skies, warmth (85F / 30C), low humidity, and best of all, calm winds.
I got in 3 jumps from 15,000 feet, 60 seconds freefall, with absolutely perfect, smooth, level-out landings. My ol’ ‘chute is in great shape.
Skydiving IS the “ultimate” way to maintain physical distancing during the Coronavirus pandemic. (LOL).
Life is short: Remember to yell, “Geronimo!”
Here is a larger image of the only photo that “B” took of me after I jumped from the plane: