The evolution of an adventure.
I had the last post about going to McCormick’s Ski Park in my draft post folder for the last week. But events kind of overtook me before I could get it out there. Here is what happened.
I’ve been thinking about going to the Ski Park since I saw it from the plane coming into Tampa International about 3 months ago. That was just general thinking/wondering about it.
(No action/no results.)
In the meantime I’ve been lusting after KiteBoarding. Even went down to the skyway bridge on a windy day to watch people doing it. It turns out kiteboarding is
1) Flying the kite
2) Riding the board
3) Putting them together
A month ago I saw the ski park again from the air. That’ triggered more thinking. This time I went online and googled it, finding the McCormick web page.
(Little action/no results.)
Last week, I mentioned it to a guy at work and he said he would go with me.
(Little action/ still no results)
This Friday I stopped by the SkiPark since I was driving by on my way to Orlando. The ski park is on the other side of Tampa from where I live and work. I almost didn’t. Traffic was heavy, rain was threatening, I was hot, I was late, etc. etc. etc. I put that all aside and took the detour over to the park.
When I got there and asked for more info on the park and how to get lessons. The clerk suggested I go down to the learning cable and ask the operator there. I got there just as the last kids where leaving. No one else was there but me and the instructor (Paul). He said the way it worked is you buy a park pass, rent a helmet, board and life vest, and then come down and he would give me pointers. Nothing complicated about that. It was just me and Paul there, with 2 hours left till the park closes. It took about a 30 seconds. I decided not to wait to go with the guy from work. I changed into swim trunks and started wakeboarding!
(Big action/Big Results!)
In this picture I’m on the learning wire which goes to the end and back under the control of the instructor. In the background you can see the big lake with a wire that continuously goes clockwise around the lake. It can have 9 people on at one time, evenly spaced around the lake. It has ramps, jumps, etc. Looks like a lot of fun.
At the end of two hours of instruction, here is what I can do. In the second run you can see me switch from one foot forward to the other.
But boy am I stiff in the arms, shoulders, and back today! Time for some vitamin A (Advil)
A big thank you to Paul over there at the park. He was amazing, giving directions in an easy to understand manner, with full commitment to having me getting the best experience and developing as much as I could. He was great! He was very modest saying someone showed him in the beginning and he was just passing it on. A really great guy.