Jumping from the Orlando Towers in Soweto

Jumping from the Orlando Towers in Soweto

Sounds crazy but that’s what I did yesterday … New Years Day 2012!!!   And today, I’m tired .. maybe I’m drained of all adrenalin !!

I was the first one to do the Power Swing at the Orlando Towers on the first day of January 2012.   Jeanette’s blogs have the whole story.  In a nutshell, Jeanette ticked off one of her bucket list ‘thingies’  by doing the jump.   Elaine and I joined her.

When Jeanette suggested I join her, I was very doubtful at first but then I thought, to hang with it .. life is short .. let me do it!  Elaine and Bryan had planned to do it sometime (Bryan doing the bungee) so the opportunity was now!

Throughout the whole experience I didn’t think of the height – in fact only after I had signed in and they were marking my hand with numbers, did I ask how high it was!!  But I was told not to worry … you free fall for 40 metres up to Mandela’s chin –  Mandela is painted large and proud on the other tower.   OMG looking up … it was high !!!  There was a huge space between the platform and Mandela’s chin and another enormous space between the chin and the ground!!

I tried not to think about the height and virtually put it out of my mind.  I didn’t look down while going up in the cage.  Unfortunately I had to look at the open metal steps going from the top of the cage to the platform.   My heart leapt a bit there!!    Tiny cars and things were way down below 🙁    Butterflies in tummy at this point .  I paced a bit taking deep breaths saying to myself that I can do this.  Elaine looked over the end and said, I can’t do this.  I said – yes you can .. you can do it.  I’m the mom – moms give their children encouragement even though they are scared as hell 🙂

From then on I didn’t look down at all, I kept looking to the horizon.  Never looked down the inside of the tower (fortunately the camera chappie took a photo otherwise I would never know what it looked like!)

I must add here … the girl who was helping on the platform .. and they were all marvellous, trying to boost our confidence with loud music, dancing and singing … she had earrings with skull and cross bones on them!!  Horrors!!  I told they were very unappropriate for the job that she does and said pretty flowers would be better.  She smiled and said that flowers are used for funerals too !!!  Not funny !!

Another chappie said they should be sponsored by Nike and have a huge Nike swish painted on the ground below with the words  YOU CAN DO IT in large letters – good idea !!

Bryan was the first to go as he was doing the bungee.   Oh yes, that’s when I looked down, I was watching Bryan flying through the air and then swinging head first!!!!!!  From up top, it look like he was going to hit the side of the towers, but seeing hubby’s photos, he was nowhere near the side …

Bryan you were the first one to bungee on the first of January 2012 !!!!   Woohoo !!

The only time I saw the ground way .. way .. way down … was when I was all hooked up to the swing and safety ropes and the chappie looked at me.  OMG it was my time to go – I remember saying to him  “I can do this” .. took a deep breath and walked to the edge.  No, he said, you have to get the end of your shoes to the red bar.  That’s when I looked down again –  moved my first foot to the red bar and the second one weighed a ton!!!!  As it reached the edge/the red bar is at the edge the countdown began.  I can’t turn back now, I have to do it.

Scary stuff .. you walk off the platform into nothing.  The air around doesn’t seem to be there.  You can’t breath .. there’s no air.  It’s nothing.  I don’t remember having my eyes open.   I only remember my eyes being open once I had reached Mandela’s chin but I didn’t see him.  I could breath again…  and it was amazing!!

My body and soul became one again.

The feeling when you’re swinging is magical.   Huge giant swings back and forth.

You feel the jerking of the ropes as they lower you down to mother earth.

You come down pretty quickly and the chappies on the ground catch you safely.  Wow – what a feeling once you’re back with feet on the ground.  The one chappie  gave me a high five and a “congratulations Mama.. you are the first one to jump for the year “”   I was given an extra high five !!!     One for the record books, I’d say !!! 🙂

So very very proud of my two girls who followed me into the nothingness of air 🙂  I really thought Elaine wouldn’t do it .. .but she did!!!  Proud of you sweetie pie, for conquering your fear of heights, and having the courage to take the plunge, as it were !!!  xxx mwah

And then it was Jeanette who kept saying she should have been first so that she could take photos of us coming down!!     Proud of you my girl, for your courage and determination!!!  That’s what you’ve always done and will continue to do  xxx mwah

Certificates to prove that …. we did it !!

Would I do it again ….. no !   I would love to try tandem skydiving!!!  Although at this point, now, today, the thought of jumping into nothing is a little far from my mind.  I may consider it when the feeling of breathlessness surrounded by air has gone 🙂

Hot air balloon is a definite 🙂    * hint hint** wink wink* … my 60th birthday looms next year  🙂

7 Replies to “Jumping from the Orlando Towers in Soweto”

  1. You are braver than I am. I haven’t tried something like this yet. Closest I’ve been is ziplining and its not nearly the same. Well done to all four of you.

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