For the past month, Dave has been taking paragliding lessons from the Big Bird paragliding School (빅버드 패러글라이딩) found right here in Daegu. This past Sunday marked the first time he could do a solo flight. So of course Matt and I had to tag along and tandem fly with him (^_^).
It didn’t seem real as we loaded the van with these over-sized backpacks that I could easily fit in. I took everything in as we walked into the office, the various people greeting us and amused that Dave had brought in some of his foreign friends. I noted the dried fish hanging over the door, like a rusty horse shoe, it bestowed luck on the people flying that day. Apparently it’s a custom that you do when you buy a house or a car as well.
We headed out to Guji, (구지면) not too far from Daegu. We then got onto what looked just like a bike trail and made it up Daeni Mountain (대니산). The view was breathtaking. And yes … when I strapped that backpack on and the helmet was placed over my head… my heart dropped and my legs felt weak. I mean, you really are choosing to jump off a mountain. Or rather, let this piece of cloth drag you off your feet and up into the air. It’s crazy. It was a rush and it was just utterly beautiful! I got to do two jumps, all for about $60. It was epic! I may do it a few more times. Learning to do it on my own? Hmmm who knows. But Matt got super excited about it and may do it with Dave.
The day was long, and blazing hot. As the noobs, Matt and I sat around a lot and baked in the sun. Thankfully someone had the compassion of buying everyone ice cream. The night ended with Dave being inaugurated into the Big Bird Club … aka drinking MekJu (Beer + soju) out of a helmet that was passed around and people took turns pouring it all in. It’s an actual tradition the ajossis (old guys) seem to rather enjoy. Poor guy .. but what a way to celebrate! lol.