Patman's adventure continues

Patman

Pantless Wonder
Joined
Dec 26, 1999
Messages
19,774
Likes
0
#1
Part II

Remember the cold water? Well that was behind me, I thought.

Day 3 continued:
After the white water trip dad and I changed into some dry clothes and then the whole clan headed for some lunch. After a very nice lunch we went to a local ruby mine and bought a few bags of dirt to sift and see what great finds were ours. Unfortunately we did not find the next Hope diamond, about all was a few small rubies, a couple sapphires and a very nice and quite large hunk-O-pink quartz with a few other odd semiprecious stones, not too bad for $8 plus it kept Little Patman very entertained for about an hour. Back to the hotel to kick back for a bit, take a dip in some not so cold water and have some of Pizza Huts finest for a light dinner along with copious amounts of Fosters.

Day 4:
A travel day to my dad’s place in Rocky Mount, NC for some clothes washing and a great big family dinner. While dinner was being prepared we took dad’s pickup to have 4 tires installed that I had brought from Texas for Fathers day. A little prep work on dads boat and then we took it easy after the meal.

Day 5:
Bright and early we’re up and loading for the next part of Death Wish Week. Off to the Outer Banks of North Carolina for some deep-sea fishing and to see where man first took flight (Kitty Hawk). Arriving at out reserved hotel we find that it wasn’t exactly like the brochure had depicted it. Actually it wasn’t ANYTHING like it. Seems we had to wait for our rooms to be “made ready” before we could check in. So we grab some lunch, check out the beach then head back several hours later to try again. Weeeeeellllll, seems there was this minor problem, one of our rooms had a sewage problem that caused a rather nasty problem in the room BUT, they could put one of us in the room BELOW it! YICK no thank you! So we scramble for a new place and end up finding a cottage on the beach with a deck overlooking the ocean from the second floor, PERFECT. A little known fact is that my son is actually part fish and as such goes bananas when at the beach. After Little Patman’s sand fix (hey you just have not been to the beach until it’s in every nook and cranny of your body right?) we grab a great seafood dinner and watch the ocean turn dark.

Day 6:
Ahhhhh, nothing like waking up to the sound of crashing waves. Yup what a day. We lounge on the beach most of the day and I find out that the Atlantic Ocean is almost as cold as that white water then it hits me, the ocean has white water too. DOH! Then dad says “Well maybe we should head over to Jockey Ridge.” In my head, “Oh yeeeaaahh Jockey Ridge I had kinda’ put that part out of my mind.”. You see Jockey Ridge is a state park with this sand dune that is 140 feet high. It’s really pretty cool to go and watch the people hang glide off it and fly kites in the stiff ocean breeze. Yup, Jockey Ridge. The place were Patman will become no more. See my dad has lived 67 years and even thought he has done many things he just never had the chance to hang-glide, UNTIL NOW! So maybe I SHOULD have let him fall out of the raft into the cold water and that would have shocked some sense into him? Too late. OK so we pay our wad-o-cash and the guy says show up tomorrow at 4:00pm. Whew Patman lives to see the sun rise one more day.

Day 7:
D-day. We do the beach thing and then head out about 10:00am to do a little fishing. The local bait shop informs us that we might want to reconsider going out through Oregon Sound because they had just lost a 41 foot boat earlier in the day. Ok dads boat is a good 28’ so we decide to do a little fishing in the bay and not temp the gods too much in one week. Fishing is a good way to relax and kill some time, unless you’re fishing with your family. Then YOU are the baiter, hook tie’er, and fish remover. So dad and I are doing everything we can to keep Mrs. Patman and Little Patman in shrimp while trying to keep a eye on our lines. The only problem is that my son has only been fishing about 4 times and my wife NEVER has so the fish decide to keep jumping on their hooks so they can see what fun it is to fish. FINALLY I get a bite, I real in the line and find all I did was exchange one piece of bait for another that was alive. YeeeHaaa! Boy I’m never going to hear the end of that one, the only stinking fish I caught was about 3 inches long. Yup let a 9 year old see that and everyone you meet will know about it. That’s OK though because I would be dead soon. At 3pm we load the boat back on the trailer and head to drop it off and pickup the rest of the clan (my step mother and step sister) so we can all go see me fall from the sky and become a jigsaw puzzle.

Arriving at the flight school we both sign and initial about 6 pages and 100 separate line items saying we or our survivors (sounds promising doesn’t it?) won’t sue them if we end up as bits and pieces on the sand. Then a nice 40 minute video of all the things you should and shouldn’t do that gives ya’ flash backs to drivers ed class and it’s time to climb the dune. From 1 mile away the dune really doesn’t look that big, it’s when you get about ½ way there that you realize it’s a little bigger than you thought. Then at the base your realize it’s about the same size as a 14 story building and almost as steep on two sides! Well we get our basic instructions then do a couple of little test flights off the ½ way point. Not too bad really except for the landing part. Yell “CLEAR!”, walk a few steps, then jog, then run as hard as you can POOF your air born. Pretty simple stuff until you have to “Flair” which is what you do just before you land. This causes the glider to stall and you just put your feet down and your there, easy. Well not exactly easy. You see if you flair too far up in the air you become a jigsaw puzzle on the ground so the better choice is to flair late and eat a bunch of sand when your feet don’t get under you. Pretty much explained why the glider had wheels on it the first time I flared late. It’s to help the glider scoot along the sand white you get sand pounded into every pore of your body. Oh and the great thing about the sand is that it’s not like the powdery sand in Cancun or Sarasota, no this is where the sand paper companies come to get their 40 grit sand. So now I can make a choice, flair early and not become polished on the deck or flair late and increase the smoothness of the front of my body, hmmmmmm. OK test flight 2 goes pretty good I got some nice air under me and I’m thinking about the flair part. Yup I’m going to make it this time. WRONG! I try as hard as I can but I still use the wheels of the glider to help me tour Jockey Ridge.
Sooo it’s time to move up to big part of the dune and “Get some good flight time.” as the head instructor says. Ooooooo great now I’ll have more speed to skip across the sand and my body becomes hamburger, yippee! Big air flight 1 was AWESOME! Man I am flying now! Look at my family waaaaaay down there, they look so excited. Yeah now this I could get into. Oh time to come down. Dang I forgot about that flair thing, OK I can still pull it off. Nope. Whew weeeee, yeah buddy my knee cup on my Asterisk brace that I am wearing on my right leg is looking like I was sliding down the street behind a car at 40mph now (see I figured it’s better to sacrifice the plastic than my skin so since I had to wear the brace anyway and I wasn’t going to land on my feet I just crossed my legs and let the brace take the hit. Dang it I’m going to pull this flare thing off if it kills me! Big air flight 2. Big air flight 2 is ever better! Yeah, this rocks man I am the king of the world. OK we’re doing this flair thing for sure this time Patman so screw you head on straight. Whew good thing I screwed my head on because I flare all right! With about 10 FEET of air under me! So that means when I let my feet down I still have a sold 7 feet of air under my sandals. Houston we have a situation! (Believe it or not this flashed in front of me as this was happening. Remember the TV show WKRQ in Cincinnati? Yeah the one with Loni Anderson :p Remember when the sales guy dropped turkeys from a helicopter for Thanksgiving as a promotion? I did.). I try to correct and find out air speed is everything and I didn’t have any. So I hit the ground running, the glider passes over me and since I am one with the glider due to the safety harness I pass over me. More correctly my feet pass over my head as I summersault in the air and make a lees than perfect landing. OK that was much worse than using the wheels to land. So as I stagger up the hill and plant my dizzy butt on the sand dad walks up and says “Hey you OK son? That looked like a pretty good ride. Maybe we should sell tickets for that show.” I nod and dad gives me a smack on the helmet and says “Hey take the gear off it’s my turn again.”. Gladly! Dad had pretty much been following in my footsteps so I wasn’t too surprised when he pulled the EXACT same landing technique as I just had. Well now I felt better :p. My final flight I was pumped. There was no way I was going to flair early again. It was another great flight, dang sure hope my wife had enough film in the camcorder and memory left on the camera. YeeeeHaaaa! The instructor is pumped, “You kicking ass dude! Isn’t it great?”. Oooooo dang… time to become a mere mortal again. “Don’t flair early dude.” (well no sh##). OK it looks to be a good time to flair so lets give it a whirl……………………………………………………..NAILED IT! Yup I am a professional hang glider’er now. Well not exactly but I have a license that says I’m working on my “Hang 1” certification.

This is another of those things that if you get a chance, DO IT! Don’t be a bystander. There are worse thing that could happen than flaring early (like flaring REALLY early) like never trying and wishing you had. I’ll admit my crash landing was about on par with some of my better get-off’s from a bike but I lived to tell about it with minimal damage. Heck my dad did it! It was his idea as a matter of fact. I was just the son that got to go along and make sure the old man didn’t get hurt since I’m the one that rides dirt bikes.

I’d like to take a moment to give a big thanks to Brad, Billy, and the crew at Asterisk. If I had not purchased their AWESOME product there is no way I could have done these things with my dad. My knee was in pretty poor shape when I ordered the Cells and my Orthopedic surgeon was pretty convinced I would most likely totally trash my knee on this “vacation”. I am happy to report I didn’t, I did cause a little more damage that might have to be fixed after Dirt Week but that will be later. It was a great experience and one I hope we can replicate in the future before he slows down too much ;).

Now tune in next time when we leave the beach and head out to the land inhabited by GOMER! :eek:
 

Patman

Pantless Wonder
Joined
Dec 26, 1999
Messages
19,774
Likes
0
#3
Now how could I possibly leave the Deliverance Crew out?:p

Don't woory I'll TRY to be kind Ivan.