Parapentes (Paragliding!)

Nunca me había cruzado la mente ir de parapentes, pero cuando mi mamá mencionó que ella siempre quería ir, pensé “¿por qué no yo?” Así que me encontré en el cima del Cerro San Javier, mirando la ciudad abajo, al punto de tirarme al aire libre (con la ayuda de un profesional.) Me dejé a la misericordia de los vientos, me sometí a la voluntad rígida de la gravedad.

It had never occurred to me to go paragliding, but when my mom mentioned that she’d always wanted to go, I thought “Why not me?” That’s how I ended up on the top of Mount San Javier, looking at the city far below, on the verge of throwing myself over the edge (with the help of a trained professional). I was left to the grace of the winds, subject to the unbending will of gravity.

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“Espera un momento. En el caso de que no sobreviva a esta locura, tengo algo que decir. Familia anfitriona, muchísimas gracias por hospedarme. Les quiero mucho.”

“Hold up one minute. Just in case I don’t survive this craziness, I have to say something. Host family, thank you so much for hosting me. I love you guys.”

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“Ajajaja no te preocupes, nena, estarás bien…. ojalá”

“Hahaha, don’t worry, you’ll be fine… I hope”

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“Señor parapentero, no te pago un centavo hasta que me devuelvas viva.”

“Mr. Paraglider, I’m not paying you a single cent until you return me to my family alive.”

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“¿No tenés problemas con tu corazón, no?”

“By the way, you don’t have heart problems, do you?”

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“No, creo que no. Entonces no hay nada que temer…. emmm verifique que mi arnés esté bien una vez más, por favor.”

“Nah, I’m great. 100%. Got nothing to fear. Uhm, check my harness one more time, please.”

 

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“¿Te gusta mi paracaídas? Es nuevo, la probaremos ahora. ¿Estás lista? Vos tenés el honor de estrenarla.”

“Do you like this parachute? It’s new. Are you ready to test it out? You get the honor of breaking it in!”

DSC_0002“Sí, totalmente.”

“Aye, aye, captain! Ready as I’ll ever be!”

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“¡Bueno, corre!”

“Then run!”

DSC_0004DSC_0005DSC_0007DSC_0008DSC_0009DSC_0010DSC_0011DSC_0013DSC_0015DSC_0016DSC_0017DSC_0019DSC_0021DSC_0044DSC_0067DSC_0059DSC_0050Poco después nos habíamos alejado tanto que ya no estuvimos visibles a la cámara. Admiraba la vista. Le pedí que me mostrara dónde vivía. Todo bien, todo tranqui. El hombre me preguntó si me gustan las montañas rusas. Cuando le dije que sí, me preguntó si quería hacer algo parecido. Accedí. Giramos a la derecha y a la izquierda varias veces y de repente dábamos vueltas de 360 grados, o sea, una sola vuelta de 1440 grados, porque él no dejó de girar después de una rotación completa, y entonces el mundo se arremolinaba a una alta velocidad y me re mareé. “¡Basta!” Le dije, pero mi voz fue acarreado por el viento y no la escuchó. “¡Pará!” grité. Se paró. Me preguntó si estaba bien. “Sí, todo bien,” le dije. “Un poco de marea, nada más.” Seguíamos bajando. Habíamos caído más rápidamente con esa trucha”montaña rusa.” Ahora estuve Tres Metros Bajo el Cielo y no estaba ni mucho menos enamorada. Sentía un poco enferma, nada más. Pero me fije en la vista. ¡Que hermosa es mi ciudad! Ay Tucumán, ¡cómo te voy a extrañar! Después, tuve la oportunidad de manejar el aparato. Momentos después, nos aterrizamos en un campo de limones. ¡Tierra firme! Ay, pero que corto el vuelo. ¡Cuánto me gustaría sumar unos minutos más al viaje! De verdad no me asustó el empeoramiento, era la anticipación que me hizo nerviosa. Cuando el vuelo empezó, ya no tuve miedo.

Le pregunté al parapentero como obtuvieron el permiso para aterrizarse en el campo. “De verdad no obtuvimos permiso. Sólo empezamos a aterrizar allá, y los dueños nos retaron porque tenían miedo de que dañemos los árboles, pero seguíamos aterrizando ahí día tras día, y ellos vieron que no dañábamos nada, y bueno, terminaron cediéndonos permiso.”

Soon after I became a point too small to see. I admired the view. Then I asked him to show me where I lived. It was all fun and games. Then, the guide asked me if I liked rollercoasters. When I said yes, he asked if I wanted to do something similar. Against my better judgment, I said yes. We started swerving left and right and suddenly we were doing 360-degree turns or one single 1440˚, because he did not stop after each full rotation and the world was swirling super fast and I started to get motion sick. “That’s enough!” I said, but my voice was lost to the wind. This was no time to be polite.”STOOOOP!” I roared. He stopped and asked if I was ok. “Yeah, I’m good. That was a bit much…” I focused on the view. Wow, look at that! Tucumán is so beautiful from up here. I got the chance to pilot the apparatus. Now the earth was approaching, but not with alarming speed. We were not so far from the ground now. Too bad. I wish I had more time in the air! The view was so gorgeous. We crash-landed in a lemon field. I say crash-landed because we attempted to run, but when we hit the ground my feet came out from under me and we actually hit the ground. Not hard though. Honestly, the actual descent didn’t scare me, it was the anticipation that got me.

I asked the paraguider how they had come to get permission to land in the lemon field. “Wore ’em down.” They started landing there, and the owners yelled at them for trespassing because they were worried the paragliders would damage the lemon trees, but the gliders roguishly kept on landing there day after day, and once the owners saw they never harmed the trees, they let the gliders be.

Tomas falsas y escenas eliminadas:

Bloopers and Deleted Scenes:

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El pasto estuvo mojado, como se puede ver en la cola de la Luciana.

The grass was wet, as you can see from Luciana’s butt.

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Pocos momentos después de esta foto fue sacada, la pelota de Nicolas empezó a rodar, bajando la ladera. Todos nosotros la miramos sin mover hasta que la Carolina decidió ponerse las pilas y la persiguió. Nos cagamos de risa. Al final, la pelota se paró en algún obstáculo por casualidad y ella la pudo alcanzar. Si no, seguramente algunos animales habrían formado un equipo de fútbol forestal. ¿Messi se jubila del equipo nacional argentino? No hay problema, encontrará un pecarí o ocelote habilidoso para ser su surplente.

A few minutes after this photo was taken, Nicolas’ ball started rolling down the side of the mount. We all just stared at it for a few seconds until Carolina decided to chase it. We died laughing as she pursued it. Luckily, the ball hit some obstacle and stopped and Carolina caught up to it. It was not lost to the forest and future generations.

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*risas malvadas

“Jajaja le obligaremos a la Carlina a lanzarse al precipicio mientras nosotros nos quedamos sanos y salvos acá arriba.”

*wicked laughter

“Heh heh heh look what we’re gonna make Carlina do for our entertainment! She’ll throw herself off a cliff while we stay up here, safe and sound. “

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5 thoughts on “Parapentes (Paragliding!)

  1. That is AWESOME,,, way to go!!!that is a very big mountain you ran off :-)One of those moments you will never forget..Thanks for all the photos!! cherryo.

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  2. Tassie here–Jodie and I were laughing our heads off as we read this. We decided it was awesome, brave, terrifying and gorgeous. So much fun to do! Did you yell, “YOLO!” Or what is the Argentine equivalent? Way to flffffflllllyyyyyy!

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    1. Uncle Todd here, we’ll done Carlina, but you didn’t need to tell me you crashed…the moment I saw the photo of you in front and the small Argentinian in back I said to myself…hey they’re going to crash. Carly is very smart but perhaps not at physics. Hey look, a Giraffe is riding on the shoulders of a Prairie Dog, I wonder how this will end? Hey tell me where you live and by the way what’s all the fuss about loading the luggage in the back of the plane not the front? Hey why is the front landing gear on this particular craft ten feet longer than the rear gear? What is the opposite of a taildragger, maybe a “Carlina Post hole digger”? Hey we’ve accumulated all this surplus inertia and there’s a lemon grove, what say we make some lemonade?

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