Last summer Timothy and I accompanied Joe on one of his work trips to Kansas City, and while Joe did his engineering stuff Timothy and I went to museums (note the plural) and explored the downtown area. Then, one day we decided to go zip lining. I’m not quite sure how this happened, but I think guilt was involved because of all those museums (again, note the plural).
Me, not really understanding what I signed up for.
Shortly after arriving to Zip KC we were given a giant harness with straps, buckles, and a gazillion things that I didn’t know the name of. It’s a little disconcerting not knowing the language WHEN YOUR LIFE DEPENDS ON IT. “Do I put this strap through this thing and loop it over this buckle clip thing?” I heard myself asking at one point. Then we labeled our helmets … you know, for identification purposes. The adventurers, Timbo and Bia.
Timbo the Adventurer
To go down, you have to first go up. Who knew? Basically, this involves a staircase going ‘round and ‘round up a huge wooden tower in the middle of nowhere. All the way up, with our shoes pounding on the wooden steps and our harnesses jingling, we were a veritable orchestra of people heading into the unknown.
When we arrived to the top (above the tree canopy), and once we could breathe again, we took in the sights. The panoramic view was spectacular. But just when I was having a moment with the splendors of Mother Nature our guide said “Let’s go!” and I knew he didn’t mean back down those stairs.
I don't know what these are called, but they're kind of important.
The Step into Nothing
“Who wants to go first?” the guide asked. Not me. I didn’t go second or third, either. I even let Timothy go before me, watching him zip away until I couldn’t see him anymore (good mother that I am). No, I went dead last. And if you think that taking a step off that platform was crazy scary, you’d be right. BUT, that wasn’t the scariest part. That came next.
The step off the platform.
The Really Crazy Scary Part
Since I was the last to leave the first platform, by the time I arrived to the second station everyone else had secured their perch on a platform which was half the size of the one we just left. AND the platform had no railings. AND the entire thing swayed in the wind. I kid you not, my legs felt like jelly as I stood and swayed on the edge of the platform with nothing to hold on to. I wanted to sit down, but there was no room to move!
See? No railings. And the entire thing swayed with the wind.
The No Hands Dare
Before we left the second platform, our guide dared us to zip hands-free. And so he demonstrated, stepping off the platform and zipping away leaning backwards with his arms outstretched. Everyone was dutifully impressed, but I just thought he was certifiable. Apparently so was everyone else (including Timbo) because they all zipped hands-free. Crazy, all of them. I still held on for dear life.
The Zip Line Shack of Fame
Five Towers. Five zip lines. I lived to tell the tale. The second to the last zip line was the shortest, and you know what I did? I zipped hands-free. Whoa. Back at headquarters (camp? station?) (see? I don’t know zip lining language!) we peeled off our names from the helmets and placed them in the Shack Hall of Fame. And if you ever go to Zip KC, there we are … Bia and Timbo, the Adventurers.