Taking a Leap of Faith

Have you ever leap off a bridge and live to tell the story? I do.

Well, sort of.

New Zealand Kawarau BrigeDecember 2014, I had the chance to visit the country of long white clouds- New Zealand. All in all, it was a place with beautiful sceneries, friendly citizens and fun activities.

New Zealand has always been renowned for its bungy jump. In fact, it is the house of the first ever bungy jump site in the world, the Kawarau Bridge.  A little background information, Kawarau Bridge is a suspension bridge that runs over the Kawarau River. It stands 43 m above the river and is mainly used by AJ Hackett as one of their bungy jumping sites.

IMG_5028I was lucky to have AJ Hackett host my first bungy jumping experience. The crews were fun, friendly, professional and I genuinely felt safeguarded in their hands. Aditionally, they were undoubtedly helpful in distracting me from the terrifying height of the bridge. Supposed that you are trying to picture just how high 43 meters is, it is as high as a 13-stories building.

IMG_5029The jump was especially remarkable for it was done a day after my 20th birthday at the world’s first bungy jump site. Sometimes back, I made a pact with myself that to honor my birthdays, every year, I will do one major thing that terrifies me. Providentially, I had the opportunity to envisage it last year.

AJH-KB-20141228-034-001-0003-Cam03I am not a daring soul, craving for adrenaline pump every now and then. I despise experiencing the “stomach drop” feeling, which consequently bar me from riding even the kiddiest roller coasters. My friends know I cannot stomach rides and unless I am under extreme peer pressure, I will rather wait at the sideline, cheering them on. Not to mention, I find it illogical that people are willing to fork up a sum of money to experience the discomfort.

But I conclude, people are implausible beings.
Because for all that, I still threw my perfectly normal self off Kawarau Bridge.

Considering that my trip to New Zealand was with a tour group, the jump was not part of the itinerary, although visiting the bridge to sightsee was. Through a special request made prior to the trip, the agency included the jump itself for my sister, brother and I. My reluctance was slayed by the pressure from my sister, and the case that the slots were reserved- which means no refund if I caved in to my fear.

I was restless before the jump

We needed to wait for an hour before it was our turn, as it was a huddled day. To kill time, we stood along the viewpoint watching other brave folks leaping off the bridge. Sure enough, all the hesitations I saw, and the screams I heard, made me more nervous than I already was. Time passed and soon it was time to register for the jump.

At the counter, a friendly crew took down my weight, and wrote it with a marker at the back of my hand together with my number. He then asked me if it was my first time, which I returned with a nervous yes. He understood that I was uneasy and proceeded to tell me how I would absolutely enjoy the jump, as well as how I looked so much calmer than he was during his first jump. Four thumbs up for the pleasant service, AJ Hackett.

IMG_5034We made our way to the bridge, more nervous than ever, and joined the queue. The friendly crews handed out harness and made us wore it while we waited. Another ten minutes and it was my turn. A crew led me onto the holding are where he wrapped my ankles tight with safety harness and towel. He was attentive and engaging. After my brother jumped, he guided to the plank carefully.

For all my life, that was the point which I would never forget. One step ahead and there will be nothing below me except  the bright blue Kawarau river. A few smiles and waves to the crowd and camera, and it was time for the countdown.

AJH-KB-20141228-034-001-0001-Cam01AJH-KB-20141228-034-001-0004-RovingThe blue river greeted me as I looked down.

IMG_5037My heart was about to leap off before me as he started counting down. When he said “one”, I flung myself off.

AJH-KB-20141228-034-001-0005-RovingAJH-KB-20141228-034-001-0002-Cam02I vouch that that was the best moment of my life. The sound of the wind gushing right beside my ear was sublime and best part of all, the feeling when the bungee pulled me back. I felt so alive, so free.

AJH-KB-20141228-034-001-0006-RovingAJH-KB-20141228-034-001-0008-RovingThe drop was too short but too opulent and I would totally not mind doing it again. My recollection about it was blurry but the feeling was prevalent. I was ecstatic. The boat crews let me down and delivered me to the safety of land.

AJH-KB-20141228-034-001-0011-Roving

I was contented that I overcame my anxiety and took that leap of faith. Proudly crossing bungy jump off my #BucketList and I am more than blessed to have yet another fascinating story to tell.

My advice to you, control your fear and take that leap of faith – you will be awed by what awaits you.

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