My first zip-line adventure was about two years ago with my son, Paul inside a mall in Jakarta, Indonesia. It was more terrifying than amazing because there were dozens of spectators and obviously, we weren’t up for so much embarrassment.
Afte the staff had put on the harnesses, caribiners, straps, helmet, etc. we took a short walk for the brief orientation and warm-up. Thanks to Nam the staff’s instructions were translated accurately:
Your right hand on the pulley
Your left hand on the rope
Relax your body
Sit as if you’re on a chair
Prepare to use your legs and feet to ‘walk’ upon landing
There are four stations
The whole journey is over 1,000 meters
WHAT? Yep, Nam repeated ” It’s over a thousand meters on the cable, in total!”
Oh well, it shouldn’t hurt that much. I should just follow the instructions and all will be fine, I thought. So from station 1, I was a bit nervous. Good thing it was a quick one. From the tower by the tennis court, I crossed over Thach Lam Lake. It was like the one I did in Jakarta, only no cheering and clapping- all I could hear was the siren-like sound made by pulley. And the view was gorgeous! I looked over the bamboos, wild plants, trees and the lake as if I was Indiana Jones.
As soon as I reached the other end of thr first station, the staff gestured me to follow him so I obediently did. We walked uphill, passed by the shooting range before reaching Station 2. From there, I ‘flew’ again. This time, it’s way longer and I saw the top of Bamboo Garden. The view reminded me of Zhang Ziyi in the movie House of Fying Daggers and just before I imitated her graceful action in throwing away exotic weapons unto the bamboos, The staff waiting for me at the other end gestured that I do some arms stretching for a wacky shot. Again, I did, because
I’m an obedient boy.
Now at Station 3, I realized that the station was getting longer and my thighs were feeling heavier. And there’s climbing up the 40-ft tower. Looking at the other end, the wild water of Da Huoai River was an eye-catcher! Just a few meters from me was the Crocodile Valley and you know why it’s got its name! The distance should be about three times longer thsn the previous station. Boy I started sweating like a dog!
Finale: Time to finish the torture! Really that’s how I felt. I wish I could’ve stopped after the two stations. As you could have guessed, the final station was the longest and highest drop. From there, the roaring noise made by the water in the river as it hit the hundreds of rocks was louder and more fierce. Below me were bulldozers and those heavy equipment from Bob the Builder: they were flattening the area for some development project. After hooking up the harness, the staff pushed me and before I know it I was crossing over the river, then the three pools and the valley of hungry reptiles. Finally, it’s done! I gave it a loud ” Whoa” as in ” Yey I made it” and ” Thank God it’s over”.
Here’s a clip from my adventure: