One of the regular things I do in Byron Bay is to take a stroll up to the lighthouse. One of the days I walked up I was intrigued to see hang gliders soaring high over Cape Byron. I managed to get talking to Neil, a lovely aussie guy who is a flight instructor from Flight Zone Hang Gliding and instantly I knew this was something I must do. Full of excitement and with my heart in my throat, I was picked up at Nomads Byron Bay and I jumped into Neil's car which was completely loaded with sails and poles on the roof and in the trunk behind lay all of the protective clothing. And here I was... about to discover the joy of flying like a bird.
Arriving at the lighthouse on a beautiful sunny afternoon, the wind was perfect for what I was about to do. I found myself a little nervous which I was surprised about considering I have done skydiving before, but I guess it's just human nature, however nothing was going to stop me now. Especially considering it was the season for whale watching in Byron Bay and we were almost guaranteed to see some humpback whales.
I was hoisted into the standard, yet sexy (by your grandmothers standards) and there I stood on the tip of a mountain. I looked down and the only thing I saw was the sea and the rocks!! ''3, 2, 1, GO!!'' I didn't know where to look and what I had to feel, but all I was sure of was that an overwhelming sensation of brilliance overcame me. A feeling unlike any other. To be even cornier, I felt as though I had grown feathers and truly explored how it felt to soar above the ocean like a bird.
Neil had everything well under control, thankfully. My legs were floundering in the air at one point and I freaked out. Neil calmed me down which taught me how to control myself in unique and heart racing situations. Once I had brought myself back and embraced the situation I marveled at the spectacular view across the deep blue sea, people turned into ants and their surfboards into grains of rice. The air beneath me defied anything I have ever known about gravity.
The feeling is indescribable but if I have to give it a crack I can simply say it was like being totally free. I closed my eyes and allowed myself to use all of my other senses, I highly recommend doing this. I think I found a sixth sense! As a reward, that I had won because I had not screamed, I was allowed to steer all by myself! It was a great experience and a time never to be forgotten, you see Byron Bay in a whole new perspective and although I have lived here for a long time and always know how amazing this town is, I appreciated the beauty heaps more.
A big thanks to Neil from Flight Zone Hang Gliding in Byron Bay for a truly amazing experience.