Flying A Helicopter and Holding a Tarantula (not at the same time)

Well you may be aware that I oddly like to live my life by my bucket list- which does sound strange, living life by a list of things I want to do before I die, but it enables me to live adventurously continuously with an excuse (instead of people thinking I am just that mad with no legitimate reason). If you are interested in reading my full up to date completed list just click here.

In the last few months I have ticked off two things off my bucket list which are both unique and conquer three kinds of fears that many people commonly share: of heights, of flying and of spiders.

Most recently I flew a helicopter for the first time, courtesy of a Christmas present that allowed me to fly with Phoenix Helicopter’s based in Camberley, in Surrey. Having never flown a helicopter before, or even seen one, I was excited about the prospect of doing so. As we stepped closer and closer to the little machine, (Robinson 22 if you are wondering) I realised just how minute this aircraft was- barely any room for any belongings let alone any extra sophisticated gadgets I have seen in many an action film! I was told by Will my instructor, that this machine was known to be “the mosquito of the sky”, famous for its light weight and quaint size. As we began to take off and I gazed at the numerous buttons ahead of me, the propellers began to surge, becoming louder and louder, gaining momentum.

Taking off so rapidly and with such ease was an incredible sensation, one minute we there on the ground and the next we were off, whizzing through the clouds, speeding over tree tops- it was enthralling and an experience like no other. I then got the chance to turn and dip and dive, controlling the speed, direction and height, even trying to hover at one point (which is extremely difficult). For anyone who is thinking of trying, I really can’t recommend it enough- even if you would like to see the world in a new light, travelling by helicopter is fascinating.

Before that I took a day trip down to Drusilla’s Park in East Sussex where I had been given a gift voucher to hold a tarantula (you can see where my family gets their birthday and Christmas ideas for me from). The zoo itself is small and mainly catered towards under ten year olds, filled with interesting facts and fun games (which we enjoyed nonetheless!) The voucher also enables you to bring a guest which means my friend and I were able to check out lots of small mammals like meerkets and ant eaters with very little interruption and queues, which was an enjoyable experience.

We both then met the “spider expert”, a woman who showed us a number of different spiders and creepy crawlies, from the basic garden spider to a tarantula. She was enthusiastic and positive about their enlightening individual defence mechanisms and continued to highlight how little harm they did to us- “they are more scared of you, than you are of them!” So it was lovely to be shown a tarantula by a true enthusiast. Holding the furry lady (the spider!) highlighted just how fragile this little creature is and not one to be afraid of, as many are.  A wonderful experience learning more about such a misunderstood animal!

4 thoughts on “Flying A Helicopter and Holding a Tarantula (not at the same time)

    1. Haha! The lady who who worked there built it up over time introducing you to baby spiders first and then the skin of one- it was surprisingly fragile and cute actually! Maybe you should sign up to one to work over your fear… 🙂

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