It sounds counterintuitive, but it felt great to spend a long day at the DZ with absolutely no intention of jumping out of anything. Instead, I spent the day crawling around with the lead packer, learning how to convince my slippery behemoth of a canopy that it really, really wanted to squoosh down into the little d-bag. I packed it three times after I nailed it, just to be sure.
I'm fascinated by the design of my parachute. It's poetry. Despite the rawness of my fingers from the stows and the grouchiness of my knees from the crawling, I discovered that I really like to pack. I like to manipulate the individual parts of the thing, because I find them generally miraculous - and I like to have my hands full of little miracles.
After the class, I had the singular treat of being perched on a picnic table, congratulatory beer in hand. Three of us alternately swung from the low branches of a nearby tree and watched video of freefliers catapulting each other into the wild blue yonder. I learned about the Horny Gorilla and the See Ya Later, Mr. Bill. As the sun settled lazily down behind the Ortegas, we were howling with glee.
Pretty great day, actually.
What's on tap (other than skydiving, Spanish, shootin', and my professional pursuits, of course):
* Keith Code school, for extra vroom
* WFR Certification, so's I can convince folks to let me ground crew for 'em
* Get my PADI OWD, because if I get eaten by a shark it'll be gorgeously foreshadowed in the narrative of my life
The goal? Every day, be awesomer.