Do Not Drink and Jump

Kawarau Bridge Queenstown

Do Not Drink and Jump

There’s something about throwing yourself off a bridge for sport that really sticks with you. I could say that it was my spirit of adventure, but I don’t think I would ever have gone bungee jumping in Queenstown, New Zealand, if it wasn’t for the alcohol.

Our story begins with a 9 a.m. wine tasting. Who goes wine tasting at 9 a.m.? Well, my family. We call it “getting a start on the day.” It was soon after that I found myself on the Kawarau Bridge overlooking a humongous body of water. So, I decided to stretch. But why would I stretch before bungee jumping? I mean there’s no athletic prowess necessary; stretching before bungee jumping is as beneficial as telling the truth on your internet dating profile. But that’s what you do when you want to look productive, not terrified.

I wanted to turn back, but my father had decided to join me. Meanwhile, my mother thought we were both crazy and was finalizing my father’s will.

My father volunteered to go first. With a little whoop he took off, falling in a perfect arch. It was truly a thing of beauty. And 3.5 seconds later, it was my turn.

I started to sweat. And my knees got weak. And I really wished I had gotten my wine in a to-go flask. But I mustered up what was left of my pride and jumped. And it was amazing: at least for the first two seconds. Then the rational side of my brain started to fight the booze and the adrenaline. You do realize that you’re attached to a glorified rubber band, right? My brain said. And at almost exactly the same moment, my bulky sweater and my loose jeans started trying to escape from my body in different directions. How had this turned into a Girls Gone Wild video?

All I knew was that in the videos I had seen, (the bungee jumping, not the Girls Gone Wild) everyone always had their hands up in the air. So I used one hand to try and hold my clothes together, and the other one to pump the air, all while screaming my head off.

And in another 1.5 seconds, it was over. I was none the worse for wear and I kind of wanted to go again. But not before having a drink to calm my nerves, of course.

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