Florida Guide > Other Activities
Skydiving in Florida
When we invited our friends Kath and Karl to come with us to our Florida villa, little did Karl realise what was soon to be in store for him. Unbeknown to him his sons had done a little research on the internet and, for his birthday a few weeks later, presented him with a voucher for a tandem skydive at the Skydive Space Center in Titusville.
Once in Florida Karl made arrangements to take his jump early in our second week. As the day grew nearer Karl’s nervousness increased almost exponentially. For a man trying to give up smoking this was not the best of times.
The most direct route to the Skydive Space Center is to take State Roads 417 (Central Florida Greeneway), the 528 (Bee Line Expressway) and 407.
Karl’s jump had been booked for 1. 00 pm but he had been advised to arrive a quarter of an hour earlier to complete the paperwork. We left the villa giving ourselves an additional half-hour to spare.
After a brief pep talk by one of the jumpmasters, Karl was strapped into his harness and introduced to his jump buddy and the photographer who would video his 15, 000 ft journey back to earth. Meanwhile the rest of our party were taking refuge from the 90-degree heat under a shelter next to the hanger and taking advantage of the cold drinks dispenser.
Karl was then led off, almost like the condemned man to the light airplane from which he would jump. Even this aspect of his adventure was being videoed. As the plane took off we watched its ascent into the sky for as long as possible, but eventually lost sight of it in the deep blue sky. It was then, for us anyway, a matter of waiting and casting frequent glances up into the sky trying to spot the descending parachutes. In the air meanwhile, Karl was attached to the harness of his jump buddy and when the green light appeared was launched into space! As we were later to see, from the video, the affect of g-forces on the face are quite remarkable!
Once down on the ground – a superb landing demonstrating the ability of the experienced jumper and videoed by the photographer who had accelerated and landed before the tandem jumpers – Karl regained his composure with the help of a couple of cigarettes and we waited for his video to be produced. We had planned to visit Cocoa Beach but, probably due to Karl being in the second jump group, the editing of the video took some time, so it was back to the villa for an evening in, watching Karl’s spectacular decent, including flapping cheeks against a backdrop of the Florida coast and Kennedy Space Center. This was an experience that even we mere observers will never forget.
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Page added on: 2 October 2007
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