Friday 1 June 2012


 Today I swung on a trapeze…why, didn’t you?  

It’s something I’ve been dying to do for a long time, in fact, before I had the King I signed up for a class in Regent’s Park, in London, and it was rained out (surprise surprise). So, two years on, I finally managed to rebook the class and go and attempt to carry out my cirque du soleil fantasy. Fantasies are fun aren’t they, but oh so far from reality.

Firstly, need I remind you, actually forget that…need I remind myself that I am afraid of heights. Yes, you heard me. I bet you’re wondering why the hell I decided to climb up a very tall ladder and let some man push me out onto the trapeze without a second thought. Who are we kidding, there were OH SO many thoughts going through my head; mainly, am I going to die? Who last died on this thing, why is this ladder so damn rickety, and did I remember to leave a will and explicit instructions on how the King likes his pasta?

So it went like this, six eager trapeze wannabees (or scared sh*tless morons) met in a section of the park where they had set up a giant trapeze, netting contraption. Two out of the six of us were apparently pros and had been coming for weeks. The rest of us looked slightly ill as we realized how high the trapeze actually hung above the ground. After some warm up stretches (in which I almost pulled a muscle, NOT a good sign when you’re about to go flying through the air) and a few trial runs on a small bar hanging about seven feet off the ground, we were told that it was now time to climb the ladder and try out what they just taught us.

WAIT, whoa…yeah, that was my first thought too. They ran through a bunch of directions once that I was barely comprehending; we hung upside down with a person on either side of us, and then got down. That was it. I certainly did not think that was grounds to go climbing up I don't know how many feet above the ground and pretend I was a professional acrobat. Needless to say, the first time up there was a bit of a blur. The mere ascent up the ladder almost made me puke, the only thing saving me was the fact that I was heavily harnessed and had a wire attached to the side of my belt and I was too scared to climb back down the ladder.

When I got to the top that’s when it really hit me: I HATE HEIGHTS, what the hell was I thinking!! The second thing that hit me was this man standing behind me holding my belt and telling me to lean forward and grab the bar cause he’s ‘got me,’ well, he better be telling me the truth or I’m going to find him and kill him (that’s after they peel me of the ground). After a few deep breaths and a rallying of my pride (the instructors were those hardcore annoying, ‘we don’t say can’t’ types) I jumped out, let out a large scream and went flying through the air. The instructors on the ground were apparently yelling directions at me (lift your knees, lock them onto the bar, now let go of your hands, blab la bla) but to be frank, I just heard my heart beating and the sound of death rushing towards me.

When I got down on the ground after the first time – and kissed it – the annoyingly pushy instructor told me that I did fine, but next time maybe I could listen to the directions and not scream so much. Oh, step ASIDE, instructor lady! I was just happy all my limbs were still attached to my body. Needless to say, after watching the rest of the group go – and one girl get the hell out of there, fast – I climbed up that rickety old ladder several more times and kicked that trapeze's ass. Not only did I hang upside down (you hear that King, your Mamma ain’t no sissy!) but I did the catch and release with the instructor shouting commands at me and managed not to have a complete coronary in the process.

And the best part, I have proof for the King (in video form) that his mom rocks and still managed to come home alive and make him his pasta the way he likes it. Ah, the small successes in life.

Happy Friday.

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