So last month I went to visit my best friend, Beth, in West Virginia. I live in North Carolina. We have been best friends since we met in Art class in 7th grade. That was 31 years ago. Beth is a major outdoor adventure guru! She is the Marketing Director for Ace Adventure Center. (ya'll should go visit them!) Me...well, let's just say my exercise usually involves walking around a flat neighborhood on a sidewalk and pushing the pedal on my sewing machine. hee,hee,hee. However, I love to hike through the forest and that is something I can't do where I live unless I want to be ate up with bugs, ticks, chiggers, and fleas. Ick, gag, puke!
So anyway, we start out our adventure on Friday morning on a beautiful hike through the forest with her two fun dogs. This is me near one of the many waterfalls. We hike for 3 hours. Whew!
Then it's time to go on the zipline tour. Basically, a zipline tour is a series of cables hooked from platform to platform. You get hooked onto the cable and you "zip" from one platform to the next. Ok...I think I can handle this. How scary can it be? There are a series of 7 zips on this tour and one rope bridge. It took about 2 1/2 hours to complete.
Let's first take a gander at our lovely helmets. Notice the folks in the background wearing red helmets? Notice I am wearing a white helmet?
Well isn't this just sooooooo attractive! (I'm giving Beth lots of smart comments here) Don't I look fabulous? hee,hee,hee. Do you notice what it say's on my helmet???? JR!! I had to wear the kids helmet!!! Oy! I'm a very small person. I'm 5'1" and I weigh 88 lbs. Noooooooo, it's not great. It's awful to be 43 in a 13 year old body. I can't ever find clothes! Ok, I digress. On this tour you need to weigh at least 70 lbs. to participate, which most kids do nowadays.
So we take a bus ride up the mountain. That was fun. Our zipping party consists of a mom, dad and two sons, a young married couple, me and Beth and 3 guides. There are guides who send you off the platform and guides who catch you on the next platform. Ok, I'm feeling pretty good about this. Here Beth and I are hanging out on the platform waiting to zip. We're all tied in nice and safe.
Well, there is a whole procedure to get us all rigged into the cable. Remember, safety first. They tell us we should never touch the cable because if the pulley we are attached to should slide, it will cut our fingers off. They'll never find them as we are way up in the trees and I'm sure wild critters would eat them before I could find them. So seeing as my fingers are important to stitching, I make an extra note about not touching the cable. The lovely, Grace, hooks me in while Scotty watches to make sure everything is hooked correctly.
Now it's time to zip. Oh my gosh!! We are soooooooooo high in the air!! What did I get myself into?? Oh well, Zippity Doo Da! Off I go! Look out, kid on a cable!! Weeeeeeeeeeeeeee!! Your weight and gravity help you move along the cable. The heavier you are, the faster you zip. Remember.... I'm the size of a kid.....
The next few zips were really fun as Beth got to be on the other line near me. But then...we got on the longest and the highest zip.....It was really high in the air, over 100' above ground and a really, really long zip.
Soooo we go zipping along and I see the platform. Beth reaches the platform. I slow down, and slow down and sloooooooooooowwwww down. I start trying to swim through the air to reach the platform. But noooooooo, oh nooooooooo! I go zipping backwards!! Yes, backwards to the middle of the zip line! There I am dangling over 100' above ground by a darn cable! (I'm out in the middle, that's Grace in the forefront) SCARY!!!! Help, help, help...don't panic Shell and don't touch the cable! I start thinking about the cable busting and if I could manage to fall on a tree and just climb down. Yeah...like a super hero or a stunt woman! Yeah...not! I'm a stitcher and quilter for goodness sakes! Save me!
But lucky me, they are totally prepared for just such a situation. However, I am informed that I am the first rescue of the year an normally they only have to rescue the 70 lb. children! Hey, at least I didn't cry! hee,hee,hee.
The lovely, Grace was sent out to real me in like a fish. Everyone had a great chuckle about it. I told Beth I was eating cake for dinner!!
Best friends for 31 years. Some of the most wonderful and amazing times in my life have been shared with her. I've made her promise me that we will share a nursing home room together. I'm sure we will have lots of adventures there too. Oh and she'll have to wear fuzzy bunny slippers that match mine. ;)
Love ya (m) Beth. Thanks for another fun adventure. Miss ya bad.