Avid adventurist Jupiter Huidrom says it was his life’s most frightening and freeing experience.
Over to him:
“The moment had arrived. My friend who fears heights was the first to go, surprising me with his alacrity. Hearing his screams echo down the gorge, I felt the goosebumps rise along my arms. The Bungee Master tied the harness on me, and I stood there, unable even to quake…I was so numb. I took three steps toward the edge of the bridge. It was the longest walk of my life.
And when I heard his voice “Ready…On a count of 3, 2, 1… and jump,” there was a sudden rush of emotions in my heart. Countless moments of my life flashed in my mind. My mom. Home. My office desk back in Delhi. And then I jumped.
Everything inside me froze as I plummeted toward the river, though I could feel each and every part of each and every bone. I so wanted to scream, but I was frightened as hell. At the same time, I felt so free that I closed my eyes and lived every second of the fall.
And when I was finally suspended, I thought it was over; only to realise I was upside down, spinning continuously. Below me, the monstrous river gushed in full flow. I reached desperately for the bamboo that would pull me back up to the river bank.
The moment I felt solid earth beneath my back, I let out the pent up air from inside my lungs, and cried—bawled—like a baby! My friend who had jumped first hugged me. We cried, and then we jumped around crazily, as we didn’t know how to deal with the sudden rush of emotions.
If you asked whether I conquered my fear by jumping once, the answer is No! Because when we stepped on that bridge again, it shook as before, and I felt the same fear. ”
This is part of our May-June 2013 Cover Story, focusing on the Himalayas. Buy your copy of the issue here.