Putting on a jetpack is a ride unlike any other - once you get over the nerves
Published: January 31, 2013
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ST. THOMAS - Describing the sensation of a jetpack is tough, like trying to explain snowboarding to a Virgin Islander.
I would be lying if I said that my mind was hovering over adjectives and analogies while I was riding the jetpack. It is too much of an adrenaline rush for stuff like that.
Like any activity that gets your blood pumping, from surfing to skydiving, riding a jetpack is something you really have to experience for yourself.
Nonetheless, I'll give it my best shot.
I do have to say first that the crew at St. Thomas JetRiders did an amazing job teaching me how to use the jetpack. They were patient, helpful, and enthusiastic throughout the whole experience.
Extra praise must go to the clever helmet-headset device that they give to beginners, allowing the staff to easily communicate pointers and instructions.
Those guys really made the experience fun.
At first, the jetpack proved tricky to maneuver. The handles are ultra-sensitive, and it is a pretty scary sensation to see your feet rising out of the ocean.
I was also very nervous.
Once I was able to lose some of the nervousness, thanks in large part to the instructor's calm directions, it became far easier.
In only 10 minutes I was soaring above the water, watching the powerful stream of water carry me up.
As I began zipping over the water, much to the bemusement of the tourists, any uneasiness that I had was replaced with excitement and elation.
Make no mistake: riding a jetpack is by no means a calming experience.
My reactions all meshed together with my brain in a sort of whirlwind of adrenaline-fueled excitement.
And yes, I was on edge the whole time.
But maybe it is a good thing to feel out of your element sometimes.