The Art of Perception.

September 1, 2008
By Ashley Newton, Cincinnati, OH

The air was warm, yet shivers ran down my spine. The passing strangers sent stares that burned tiny holes through my eyes. Terrified didn’t even begin to explain all the emotions running through my body. Never have I done this, yet I already love the rush.

“X-Treme Skyflier! Only five dollars!” the worker yelled, as he sweated out anger from his polyester uniform. I pretended that I didn’t acknowledge his existence, as I quickly pulled out my phone. I had always been afraid of heights, yet I hid that fear better than Waldo hid himself. Unfortunately, Paul’s adrenaline rush began, as he jumped up with excitement. Seth agreed, as he yanked on my black sweatshirt.

“Come on! It’s only five dollars! I'll hold your hand! I promise you’ll be fine!” Seth stated, as I quickly realized there was no way out of this one. I began to come up with various excuses, as they found a solution to each. My palms were sweaty, and the fear began to crawl up my throat. I could barley move, yet I finally forced enough out of my mouth to mutter fine. The boys jumped in excitement, as I faked a small smile. Little did I know that one word had gotten me into so much.

“Put your left foot in this hole, and your right foot in this hole. Someone will come strap you in after you do so.” The worker said, taking a deep breath. He seemed frustrated, as he slammed the door of the building he walked into. About 10 seconds later, a heavyweight man came behind us, strapping us in our suits. The click of the harness startled me, as I began to become very pessimistic. Suddenly, everything wrong that could ever happen started swing dancing in my brain. My panicked look obviously gave it away, as Seth informed me it was going to be okay. I opened my mouth to reassure myself, but this time, nothing but fear escaped my dry lips.

About 10 minutes had passed, as we were finally directed to the platform. I cautiously inched towards it, as my feet became cinderblocks, and my body became numb. Paul nudged me, commanding me playfully to step on the platform. I don’t know how I did it, but I quickly moved. I began to have a little confidence, and then I looked up. The woman directed us to link arms, and stand close to one another. She harnessed us together, as I felt the energy of the two boys’ combine. I soon realized that my negative power was being overridden by their adrenaline, as I blocked out all incoming sounds. Suddenly, we became suspended horizontally. I let out a shriek, as the boys held me tighter. I began to realize they weren’t as prepared as they thought they were.

The final directions were told, as I had been informed I was the one to pull the rope.

“The rope? What does that do?” I asked, confused.

“Once you pull the rope, the three of you will go free fall for 50 feet, and then begin to fly. After that, you will all grab on to the yellow pole that we be pointed towards you, so we can stop you.” The man said, as he begins to press the button that lowered the platform.

“No one told me we did free fall!” I screamed to Paul and Seth, as they started laughing. They both griped me tighter, as they sent positive encouraging thoughts through my brain. The higher we rose, the less I could breathe. 150 feet doesn’t seem to high, until you’re suspended in the air and the people below you look like ants. I must admit, this was a site to see. The strangers looked so hopeless and unintelligent. I began to regain confidence, as I was no longer scared of what was to come.

“3,2,1 Fly!” The man yelled, the large megaphone covering his face. I pulled the rope with all the energy I had, as the three of us screamed. Laughter quickly started, as I realized this was nothing to be afraid of. I was as free as a bird, as my hair began to flow in the wind.

That day, not only had I conquered my fears, but also I had found someone new inside myself. The side of me that let everything go and wasn’t worried about what was happening next.

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This article has 2 comments.

andy said...
on Oct. 1 2008 at 2:14 pm
this was great! deffinitly post in the issue!!!!

on Sep. 7 2008 at 7:39 pm
awww..i loved this story...keep writing!!


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