The ground was seventy-five feet below. I was standing on a precarious platform lashed to the trunk of an enormous jungle tree. The platform itself was some kind of plastic grid that I could see right through; I was standing more on air than on substance. Looking out into the jungle I could see a beautiful, breath-taking view, down into a ravine. Looking down felt breath-taking in a different way.
There was so little standing between me and a twenty-two yard fall–this flimsy platform and a short safety line that hooked me to the tree with a carabiner. I knew (intellectually) that I was safe. But my head was still spinning as I looked down. Trust was hard.
I had ridden a zip line through the jungle canopy on an adventure excursion outside of Puerto Vallarta, Mexico with my wife and some other family. We’d already zipped between seven platforms to get this far. Some were far closer to the ground, but as we got over the ravine the ground fell away, and we flew through the leafy green, sometimes more than a hundred feet off the ground. This platform was a transitional point.
Now it was time to rappel to the ground. Rappel. Two people had gone before me. Now it was my turn. My guide hooked my harness onto the rappel hardware and then unhooked my safety line.
Then he said, “Just take a seat, Marc.”