Indoor rock climbing (1st March 2009)

Caught up with Damien for brunch at Epic on Willis St this afternoon and then headed to Fergs Kayak at Queens Wharf to play Spiderman i.e. indoor rock climbing. Frankly, I was still feeling pretty exhausted from lack of sleep over the last few nights and not really keen but I’ve not done it before so screw tiredness – I’m up for the challenge!

The last time I had a go at climbing and belaying was when I did a term of indoor rock climbing course during my university days. The truth was that a few of us went for the class because the trainer was pretty hot :P He resembled the size and look of a Clark Kent aka Superman. Well, that was over 6 years ago so I don’t remember much about the sport except me smacking myself against the rock wall because my climbing buddy didn’t let me down me properly – ouch! Somehow I never got back into the activity and even though I do trust Damien, I still have reservations about climbing and not falling off (and not smacking against the rock wall). Did I also mention I have a fear for heights? Ha, Damien has gotten to know me well enough to know that despite my fears, I would take on the challenge anyway so I ain’t backing out today!

Cost us $18 per person to climb and hire the harness which we wore and clip ourselves onto the different ropes. We had a free belay course (oh yeah, I needed that!) where we were taught how to correctly handle the ropes, taking turns to climb the walls and belayed each other. We had this white tag clipped on us and could only climb within a marked white area until the staff supervising us deemed we were free to climb on our own and check out the other walls.

Man, Damien sure can climb! It looked so easy watching him go up the wall, occasionally pushing himself off to hop to another rock. Me? I was gripping onto the rocks on all fours for dear life the first few climbs!

I can tell you that rock climbing is both a physical and mental challenge. It was tough for me given that I lack upper body strength and at times just unable to grip onto the rocks to lift myself up another notch. My hands were slipping but then I get this voice in my head telling me “you can do it, just push yourself up, and take a leap of faith” – taking in a few deep breathes, I could somehow manage to push myself further to the top, stretching myself if I had to or even attempt a small jump to switch my footing on the rocks. And boy was it satisfying to touch the very top of the wall! I get this euphoria of satisfaction that just felt so good and worth the effort. Note to the ladies, please cut your long nails before you attempt the sport or you may injure yourselves. We were wearing normal sports shoes which also added to the climbing difficulty – it would have been an easier climb with the proper shoes (more foot grip).

Oh, I’m sorry Damien – I’m not so strong so when I let him down, at times he just hung mid-air and I guess it was rather uncomfortable…hee…ops :)

Felt rather sore in the arms and could see my hands shaking after nearly 2 hours on and off climbing. Still, it was a fun activity and I really enjoyed it :) Hmm, perhaps I should get a regular climbing buddy and do this one a week. Definitely more fun than going to the gym...I’m very sure I’ll get a good night's sleep tonight…ah…

Actually, this activity makes a pretty good date event. Why do I think so? Well, you get to know quite a lot about a person through the activity - you get to build trust with one another, find out whether the person you are dating is one who gives up easily when met with obstacles or one that is not afraid of challenges ahead, and just plain to see if one is physically and mentally fit. Hmm...


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