travelling

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Bungy Jumping Or At Least Bungy Falling…

Published March 12, 2016 by ElisaChristy

When I was ten or eleven years old, I saw a film where the two main characters bungy jumped off a bridge into a river. While the film’s name, the characters’ names or even the resolution of the plot  have entirely escaped my memory, the idea of bungy jumping off a bridge into a river has remained in my mind.

Aged ten this seemed like the most amazing concept. It involved two of my greatest passions at the time: Climbing up things to jump off them and trampolining. Surely if there was any adrenaline junkie activity designed especially for me, bungy jumping was it.

Only bungy jumping isn’t something you can do over any old river, or at least not in the UK, so it wasn’t until I was 24 and found my self in New Zealand where most small towns seem to offer not only bungy jumping but also skydiving over spectacular scenery that I thought about my adrenaline fuelled dream again.

The AJ Hackett bungy jumping company in Queenstown started the first commercial bungy in the world: The Kawarau bridge bungy, so finding myself in Queenstown surely this was the place to do it.

The jump itself is 43m which, while not being the tallest in the world did fulfil my ten year old ruling that the bungy jump I took would have to be over a river.

I didn’t think I was nervous, in fact as the instructors tied my feet together and asked me whether I wanted to hit the water or not – I opted for not as I was wearing contact lenses and didn’t think river water would be good for them (ten year old me would be so disappointed) – I felt quite cheerful. Until I had to stand at the edge of the bridge that is…

It was at the point that the instructor said “Go on then, jump” that the instinct part of my brain decided to take over. A survival mechanism in my mind delivered the very clear message “Don’t jump off a bridge!” and automatically I stepped away from the edge.

But the instructor was still behind me and told me “Don’t look down, look up”.

I had been staring straight down towards what my instincts told me was certain doom and instead I moved my gaze to straight ahead down the river.

In doing so the instinct part of my brain settled down again and I was able to think rationally about what I was doing, the thought process that went through my head was “I am tied to a bungy cord, I have paid to do this…”

However, my instincts were not letting go that easy, they had delivered the message “Don’t jump off a bridge” and while my conscious mind could rationalise my decision, my instincts could not, so my conscious mind came up with a compromise: Get as close to the floor as you can before you jump.

I crouched down so my knees were almost resting on the floor of the platform as my body moved forward and then I was bungy jumping – or at least bungy falling as I had sort of just tipped myself off the platform.

Now I was in free fall my instincts kicked in once more, but by now there was nothing they could do so I let out a huge scream which echoed round the cliffs surrounding the river and in that scream was another simple message from my instincts: “I told you not to jump off bridges!”

And then before I hit the water and my inevitable doom was carried out, I bounced back up and my instincts calmed down “Oh this actually is alright and quite like trampolining…this is fun after all” and then it was all over.

An instructor pulled me down onto a boat where they untied my legs and complimented me on my shoes (They have flowers on), they took me ashore and then there was nothing but a long walk back up the viewing platform.

The person who went after me did not scream, clearly their instincts don’t get as angry at not being listened to as mine.

And so the adrenaline junkie dream of a ten year old was fulfilled, even if I didn’t get my head in the water as ten year old me wished – but then I didn’t wear contact lenses back then so I think this slight change of plan should be forgiven – as for the screaming, well I think she would have approved of that, if you don’t scream, how does anyone know what you’re doing is fun (or at least terrifying)?AJH-KB-20160109-180-001-0006-Roving

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The French Riviera is kind of like Clacton with French People…

Published December 8, 2012 by ElisaChristy

But a lot more sunny! Even in December the sea seems to be warmer then the sea at home – I put my hand in it, I din’t go swimming – which probably makes sense considering it’s the Mediterranean ocean. 

Before we came to Nice we were in Barcelona, where I managed to leave behind my adaptor – so all my chargers are useless, and I have to continue carrying them around with me for no real reason until I get back to the UK, this also means all my electronic things like cameras are to be rationed, as I have to wait until I get back to the UK to load my pictures anyway – technology hates me and won’t let me load this on this laptop – that might not be a bad thing as I can make sure the pictures I do take are all good and put loads up when I get back. I think someone does have a mac charger with an australian adaptor for Europe they said i could use, so I can still use my laptop, so it’s not the end of the world.

Also in Barcelona, they have Sangria…we got some at lunch, I say some it was more of a bowl. Each. It came in a glass so big, that you could lift it with both hands and not look stupid. 

Tonight we go to Monte Carlo! Though I have absolutely no understanding of gambling, I may give myself a limit of 5 euros and just see how far it takes me!

I finished my Nanowrimo! (although this post has nothing to do with that)

Published November 30, 2012 by ElisaChristy

After spending most of the day on the coach, we are in Paris! Though I have been to Paris before on at least six school trips, things like the eiffel tower are things you can see again and still find pretty amazing. Especially since though I have been to Paris on loads of school trips, it wasn’t until my sixth time in France, I actually went up the Eiffel tower at all!

As I say, we spent most of the day on the coach, but we have the entire day in Paris tomorrow, we’re leaving on Sunday, so I can spend the day buying Christmas presents and looking at all the monuments, and in the evening – We’re going to the Moulin Rouge!

I leave on Friday and I still haven’t packed…

Published November 27, 2012 by ElisaChristy

There are many things I could have called this blog. I nearly called it “How not to learn Italian” but considering that this time round, I’m only going to be in Italy for two days, I don’t think that’s enough time for anybody to learn Italian…

I decided in this one, simply because I am hardly known for giving good advice in any area of life. I’m going travelling for a month, while I have no idea whether any of the places I’m staying will have internet, I can always save the posts up and release them into the wilds of the internet when I can, especailly now I have a Shiny Shiny Macintosh laptop – though it’s only mine for a month apprently. Not that I have any idea how to use it and considering my track record with computers this year (this is my fourth).

But whatever the name is, and whether or not I decide to change it in the near future I’ll be writing it as I go and (hopefully) learning some wisdom that no-one should take along the way.