Wednesday, November 23, 2016


We are enjoying our Thanksgiving break, especially having Nathan home.  This afternoon we made some fun memories as a family--we did some indoor skydiving at iFly!  Indoor skydiving is the "simulation of true freefall conditions in a vertical wind tunnel".  Bob and some of the kids had stopped by and observed some people a few weeks ago, and he really wanted to give it a shot.  It is *super* expensive, but Bob found a deal from Costco that helped a bit.  It was for a "birthday party" for 12.  Fortunately, we have a lot of birthdays, and Drew's is coming up next week, so that worked out fine, lol.  It meant that up to 12 people got a grand total of 24 minutes of flying time, and then we got a pizza party afterward in their "party room".

 First everyone went into a room for some training, where they watched a 4 minute video and did some demos of the positions.  Then everyone got all suited up.  The goggles made everyone's faces all squished, and then I realized it was going to be very hard to tell them all apart once they starting actually going into the wind tunnel.  
 Jonathan was first.  Tog o out there, you just stand at the door and lean in.  The wind just kind of picks you up, and the guy maneuvers you around.   The tunnel is really loud so you wear earplugs under your helmet.  Just like space-a aircraft!  They had learned some hand signals so the instructor could communicate with them.  He stood there and held onto handles sewn on the back on the jumpsuits so no one went flying away.  Plus, there was a guy sitting outside the tunnel controlling the wind speeds, and if someone got too high, he lowered the speed (or if someone was heavier than everyone else, he would raise the speed).  Here you can see Jonathan demonstrating how to arch your back.  Poor Grace arched her back so much (and she is so light) that she definitely floated off a bit and would have been better served to be flatter, making more wind resistance!
 I was worried that Drew would be terrified, but he was a real trooper out there!  Three is the youngest a child can be.  Next year for Verity, I guess.  Ha!  Drew did panic a bit on his second flight.  Everyone flew for 1:12 for two separate flights.  The general consensus was that it was really good to have more shorter flights so you could process what you did and maybe learn something for the next time.  Plus, it was *really* windy and hard to breathe, so you needed a break after a bit!  Apparently, a minute felt like a really long time, lol.
 And here we can see the difficulties of figuring out which face is whose when they are out there.  Is this Faith?  Micah?  Also, it was really hard to take good pictures.  The sun was reflecting off the glass walls, and the older kids especially were moving around so much that almost every picture I have of them is blurry (even harder to figure out who is who, lol).
 *This* one is Micah, for sure . . . I think.  No, it really is.  He had such a great time too!  What little boy doesn't want to be Superman?!
 During the second flight, the instructor took them each up way higher, which they thought was really fun.  They all had such big smiles on their faces!  Even Luke and Caleb, who had both been less than enthusiastic about this outing, agreed that it was really fun.
 One non-blurry picture of Caleb up high.
 Verity was transfixed by the sight of all her siblings and her daddy flying.  She was super excited when they buzzed close to her, and she would wave furiously while calling their names.  It was really cute.  She did not seem the least bit disappointed to not be out there, and it was a good thing someone stayed behind to watch her.  Everyone else was in this little closed off area behind the tunnel, sitting on a bench.  It was really loud in there, so she couldn't have been in there, and there wasn't anything else we could have done with her!  Really, I was just fine with not going.  Skydiving has never been a remote dream of mine in any way, shape, or form!  I am not adventurous, lol.
 Afterward we enjoyed 4 pizzas and some pop while watching skydiving videos of all sorts play on a big screen.  They even showed in its entirety the space jump of Felix Baumgartner from 2012.  I had watched clips of it when it happened, but it was much more impressive to see the whole thing in real time on a huge screen on the wall!  I can't even imagine over 4 1/2 minutes of freefall at almost 600 mph.  That is just nuts!  It certainly made indoor skydiving seem like a little walk in the park.

Part of our package included a free video of each person (they each got to choose which flight they wanted to keep).  They sent me the link, and now I need to actually download them.

So the overall consensus was that was a very fun activity, albeit a very expensive one.  It is significantly cheaper to go back a second time, than to go the first time.  It was a nice thing to do as a family, especially with Nathan home!  

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Bart and our Janelle and grandson Andrey have done this too and loved it!! Not for Grandma, though!