How to Abseil Like A Solo Rockstar Down Table Mountain

Sometimes that little nagging feeling for a good adrenaline rush get’s the better of you. Especially so when you wake up in Cape Town, South Africa. In reality, being there was pretty surreal, so I wanted to do something that made me feel damn well alive and ready to absorb my new surroundings to the max. No matter how long or how far I travel, the surreal feeling never fades. Life is just so darn precious, so I am always grateful for all new experiences. South Africa is known for it’s adrenaline activities, so it kind of is a no brainier.

I had just flown across the world to begin my solo trip to cross Africa, and before jet leg could even kick in, I was ready for action. Alright, flying business class the whole way did make for a pretty comfortable travel experience. I woke up and knew I wanted to do something that would provide a good adrenaline kick, I just wasn’t sure just what yet. So I decided to begin the day with a little mission to Table Mountain.

The majestic beauty of Cape Town and the whole surroundings – was rocking my freaken world.

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It was more beautiful then I could have imagined. It didn’t take much for me to instantly fall in love with South Africa. In the midst of running around the top of the mountain and checking things out, I came across some abseiling. I stood and watched the events taking place for a bit to see if it was the something I was looking for to provide that adrenaline rush for the day. Watching people step off the side of the cliff at 1000 meters above sea level, and having never experienced it before, definitely was looking like it was what I was on the hunt for.

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I watched as people went down in pairs, and if they rocked up alone, they would then get paired up with someone. So I figured what the heck, I am going to go sign up! When I got down to the ledge where you get roped up and sent on your abseiling way, there was only myself, and a couple behind me. ‘Ok, ok, I am sure one of the guys that work it will probably come with me’ I thought.

‘Who’s going to go first the guy asked?’ I turned around and looked at the couple, whom shook their heads no. So then I looked back at the guy and said, ‘I suppose I will’.

He then responded, ‘Well you know your going alone right?!’ Not being the type of person to act scared, I confidently responded, ‘yup’, even though I was really freaken out on the inside. ‘Alone?! Are you friggen kidding me?!’

Oh man Petrena, what the heck did you get yourself into?! I was questioning. You got this though! You can rock it. After traveling the globe like a solo rock star, I have mastered the art of self talk. Once I was roped up and ready for action, the first step was for me to lean back over the edge, stand literally on it, and put my arms out.

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Clearly I could still hold it together to make it look like I wasn’t nervous at all. That, and let’s not forget the fact that I was doing this damn thing alone. All I know how to do in life though, is be awesome, no matter what situation I am in. At least that is what I keep telling myself.

Off I went, one step at a time, shaking like a mofo, staring straight at the wall in front of me. Give a little rope, take another step. I had my rhythm down.  As I was making my way, one of the guys at the top shouted down to me, ‘Enjoy the surprise halfway down!’.

Dang, if I wasn’t so focused I may have responded. I was definitely thinking, ‘Oh shit, a surprise like that is not always a good thing.’ I kept on going though, I mean there really wasn’t any backing out at that point. After going a ways down, I knew it was time to stop, take a moment to look around, and take my eyes off the darn wall. I didn’t come this far to not take in the whole experience. Turning my head to take a glance, I suddenly went from feeling so big, to the size of an ant.

It was amazing to see the massive beauty that was surrounding me, and insane that I was hanging in the midst of it all. You are surrounded by some pretty spectacular sights from the 12 Apostles, to Camps Bay, the Atlantic Seaboard, and the beautiful blue ocean.

As I looked over at the rope beside me, I realized just how totally alone I was, on a cliff, 1000 meters in the air, and with no one to say ‘Holy shit this is crazy’ too. But you better believe I said it to myself! Numerous times. Pretty much over and over again.

Long behold, half way down, the surprise happened- the wall disappeared. My initial reaction was to pump the rope as fast as I possibly could and get it over with. Then on second thought, I decided to stop myself with that good ol’ pep talk, ‘Slow down Petrena, your safe and you need to take in this moment to the fullest’. Works every time, a little ‘me time’ talk.

Once I got to the bottom of the portion that you abseil down there was a guy waiting for me – my legs touched the ground, and I could barely stand on them from all the adrenaline pumping through. It was a surge of pure incredible endorphin’s. It was like nothing I had experienced. I was loving life! As per usual.

At the end you have to hike back up to the top where you catch the gondola back down to the base of the mountain. I was on fire the whole way up, and the whole darn day after it all. The whole experience was awesome, and I totally recommend it if you find yourself in Cape Town and on Table Mountain looking for a little adrenaline fix.

So to sum it up, if you want to abseil like a solo rockstar down table mountain, all you gotta do is: Suck it up, remind yourself to just be awesome, and go for it! Doing it alone absolutely upped the surge of it all. Why the heck not?!

It’s amazing how every adrenaline sport I have done, always provides its own unique adrenaline rush. This was by far one of my faves. I can honestly say that I rocked that one in the most awesome fashion I knew how.  Come to think of it, adventure and being awesome abroad is calling my name! I can’t help that I just love it so darn much.

How to survive an Egyption horse ride

I love Egypt, the history, the people I met, the food, the culture, the dancing. I enjoyed it all.  Another thing I enjoy is horseback riding.

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So here I was in Egypt, and the idea of horseback riding through the desert past the pyramids, was just too enticing to pass up! I mean I have rode horses many times, trotting around different locations in the world.  Having always been a pleasurable experience,  I figured, ‘Why not?!’.  We were introduced to the horses whom were going to be so kind as to take us on a nice little desert riding excursion,  and off we went through the dirt covered roads. e6

None of us quite aware of the ride we were actually in for……. Just as soon as we so gracefully entered the open desert on our fine cavalry and began to enjoy the spectacular view of the pyramids, our guide starts to get the horses to trot a bit faster.  ‘Ok, ok, I got this, I do enjoy a bit of speed’, I was thinking.  Well I was also thinking he was just going to keep it at a nice pace.   Suddenly though, the horse just went faster, and faster, and well, FASTER! And I found myself no longer enjoying the scenic view, yet purely focused on hanging on for dear freaken life!! I didn’t know my body could become a clamp until that exact moment.  But once I got past the initial shock of it all, I was able to relax and enjoy the moment, yet still hanging on as tight as I darn well could!  Like a monkey to a banana tree. The feeling though was incredible, full speed galloping, wind and desert sand in my hair(and not so pleasantly in my eyes and mouth), the majestic pyramids standing tall and proud in the distance,e4 and the vast open desert space that our horses were just flying through.  It was incredible.  We galloped and galloped for quite some time, and then finally we raced up to a little shack, which is where we stopped, and disembarked.  Let me tell you, I didn’t know you could  have such an adrenaline rush from simply riding a horse. It was insane, when I got off, I could barely stand as the adrenaline was pumping so heavily through me that my legs were shaking, not to mention, hanging onto that horse, took more muscle then I even knew existed in my body.  However, we still managed between getting our baring’s, loving the insanely awesome feeling from the amazing experience we just had, to look calm, cool, and as if standing was no problem, in order to pose for some photos:) Mandatory, of course.

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e5It ended up not just being any shack in the middle of nowhere, it was a little tea shack, like your typical everyday coffee shop on every corner, or a truck stop.  Except in this case, there ain’t no truck coming by, just horses and camels. The tea was just the refreshing, and relaxing thing that I needed at that moment.

e8I think the unexpectedness of the full speed galloping absolutely made it more memorable, and more ‘pinch your arm worthy’, to make sure you just survived that. Of course I rocked the gallop on the way back, as I was mentally in the game at that point.  There is nothing like a good natural dose of adrenaline for my little inner adventure adrenaline junky:) And yes, the next day, it was almost impossible to walk. Who knew clinging onto a horse as tight as you could, would use that many muscle groups?! An epic experience and a workout. Two of my favorite things. Egypt nailed it for me that day.