Skydive Algarve “Beyond Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara”

It was 2:00 pm on 10th May 2024, and I was waiting for the clock to move fast to 3:00 pm so that I could leave the office and catch a train which could lead me to an experience of the flying bird activity. Or I can say, I want to recreate the essence of the movie named “Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara”, with me as the lead hero of it.

So right now, I am sitting at the CAF office in Spain, for one-month training and planning for some adrenaline adventure in 2 days weekend. So as the clock just touched 3:00 pm, myself and Himanshu Sharma, who is my colleague in the Interior designing team of Metro Coach, packed our laptops and ran towards the apartment to collect the belongings which needed to be with me while I was on adventure travel.

So, I reached Estación de tren Beasain (Train station of Beasain) and caught the first train which just came. This train will take me to San Sebastian, where I used to my next flight. In the journey of 54 minutes with 17 stops in between, I have experienced multiple natural and urban beauties of the part of Spain.

I had a lot of time till my flight to Seville, but it is always a worry to travel in a new country because you don’t know the way things move here. So, from the Train station, I ran towards the location where Google Maps showed me the point where I could get the bus to San Sebastian airport (Donostiako Aireportua).

After waiting around 20 minutes, I saw a bus coming with the number mentioned E21, which Google Maps says is the correct bus to board. As I didn’t know even a single word in Spanish, it was a tedious task to talk to people and make them understand what I wanted or where I wanted to go. So, I showed him my phone with the name of the location, and happily, he understood and asked me to sit. I then asked him for a ticket, but he made some hand signs which was way over my understanding. So, I just sat on one seat. Fear was also there in me as I didn’t have a ticket, but I thought why reject a free ride?

Soon I reached the airport, which is quite a small one, with its limits till a river named Bidasoa, which makes a boundary between this part of Spain with France. Which means by sitting here I can see the land and houses of France.

So then the tough task is coming one by one. First, I just rejected by airport security as I had a bottle filled with water, and in European countries, it is strictly restricted to carry water inside the airport. So, I needed to empty it and then successfully I entered. The one issue that always persists with me for the language, as the people I encountered in Spain didn’t know English, and I didn’t know Spanish.

After waiting around 2 hours, finally, the Flight to Seville from Volotea Airlines just arrived, and boarding started. There was again an issue that the announcements were in Spanish or Basque only. So, I have to use Google Translate Transcript to get to know what they are saying. So, with the beauty of technological understanding, I boarded the flight and at 7:40 pm finally took off for the next destination of Seville.

Seville is the place where the three heroes of Zindagi Na Milegi Dobara, Arjun, Imraan and Kabir had done their Skydiving adventure. By the way, I am also going to Skydiving, but I need to get more thrilled than Seville. So, I had taken a bus at 11:40 pm in the night to Faro. Faro is the city in Portugal, and this is the first time I am moving to another country than Spain.

The bus was good, and I found some good company from travellers from the US and Turkey. We chatted for a while then took a nap in the comfortable bus of ALSA.

There was a stupid twist that happened in between, As I was about to reach Faro, my watch showed me at 2 am, and I thought the bus was late and it would be easier for me to spend less time in Faro at night. But suddenly I saw the clock on the bus which was showing 1 am. And then I realised that Portugal time is 1 hour behind the Spanish time. And the sadness of staying a full night makes me again in the feeling bad.
So now it’s 1:20 am (Portuguese time), and I was all alone outside the bus stop, which was closed for the night and my next bus is from another walkable location at 6 am in the morning.

Soon I heard voices of guys and girls from far near the banks of a small river. I first thought of fear of getting robbed in the new town and new country, but still, I gathered some courage and moved towards the voice. There was a group of boys and girls just enjoying drinks and laughing and gossiping. It was fun to look at them. Soon I realised that there was a nearby area from where lots of similar noise was coming. And now I have come to the paradise of the nightlife of this small city of Faro. People were drinking, dancing and gossiping. It’s a good view, so I also joined them with a glass of sparkled water and tried to have a chat with them. The best part in Portugal was people really speaking English as well as Portuguese, and it’s easier for me also to communicate with them.

So now I have spent around 3 hours with these funny people who were just enjoying their life to the fullest. And then it’s my way to move towards the location from where I need to catch another bus to Portimão at 6:00 am. So, the location is 20 20-minute walk from the starting location, so I started wandering around the tiled streets of Faro with all alone and no fear now, as Europe is one the safest area for night exploration. There may be some exceptions, but this is what I feel.

So, I reached by 5 am at another bus stop and it was all dark with the hint of streetlamps and no human feel all around. So, I waited and at 6 am the bus came and now it was time to reach the second last destination of my trip, Portimão. In the middle of the trip, I had a nap also, so that at the time of my adventure I could be energetic.

By 7:40 am, they dropped me at the Portimão Bus stop and now from here I was just searching for any conveyance to the Skydive Algarve Aerodrome, which is around 6 kilometres from here. As this is a very small town, so finding out conveyance is not easy and also my Uber is not accepting any of my credit cards for booking. So, I decide to take a good healthy morning walk for the next 6 km.

The start was good, and the wonderful oxygen-rich air never made me feel tired. My muscles and blood were getting huge amounts of oxygen for the very long walk.

In 76 minutes, I finally reached Algarve Aerodrome where the base of Skydive Algarve is located.
As I was a bit minute early, so I had a Cheese sandwich breakfast with Capuchino but was a bit disappointed. The Sandwich is just a cheese slice over Papo seco (Bread for Sandwiches in Portugal). As an Indian, I am more interested in cooked stuff, but this was just there to fill my appetite, nothing more.

Finally, I started registration and payment for the skydive with the wonderful team of Skydive Algarve. Phillipe will be my Skydiving Instructor who has done more than 8000 jumps till now and Carlos will be my cameraman, who will capture all the moments while I am in the sky.

So, we with team of 4 more people like us who were about to dive with us. Now we have been moved to the hanger side where we get dressed in our diving suits and a few documents have been signed. Phillipe provided me with all the instructions which I must follow while jumping, tapping, moving hands, moving legs while landing etc.

Now the time has come when the jump was about to begin, and we were moved towards the Dornier G92 aircraft which can reach 15k feet in just 11 minutes.

I was tied with Phillipe as he was my tandem instructor, and he was constantly checking for all the clips multiple times as a safety protocol. As the flight starts, it gains speed in an instant, and then suddenly takes off with a constant 45-degree inclination. The ground on which a few seconds back I was standing, now it’s becoming a world map and zooming out like we zoom out in Google Maps.

Philippe was constantly showing me the altimeter reading for the height we were gaining. Now Philippe revealed that I would be the first one to jump from the plane, and at this moment I got nervous Inside, as this was the first jump, and I would be doing it first. But I had no other choice now and this must be done, as there is no going back at the height of 15000 feet.

Now Carlos with multiple recordings of my expressions, opened the door of the plane and this was the moment of heavy goosebumps for me, and I was thinking from inside “I am going to die, but I don’t want to die now”.

As per Philippe’s directions, I folded my legs outside of the plane and moved my head backwards. The heavy gush of air just blows my fascination to a new level.

And then… Philippe jumps from the plane with Carlos in front of me with the camera. And this is the moment I will never ever forget in my life. The feeling of flying birds, the feeling of Superman flying in the sky, and the feeling of flowing between Sky and Land, are two important elements of life.

Those 15-20 seconds were like reminding me that you are no ordinary one, you are a special one and this is your place where no one can make you down. This is the moment where I feel like I am above all, above worlds, above all people and above eternity.

These 20 second were like the dialogue of movie named Chak de India, where Sharukh Khan said, “Marr jaayenge – par haar ke nahi aayenge!! Sattar (70) Minute, sattar min hai tumhare paas. Shayad yeh… tumhare zindagi ke sab se… khaas sattar minute”.

Just for improvisation, I had only 20 seconds instead of 70 minutes. So, in these 20 seconds, I tried to live life as much as possible, because I know that this exact moment is inevitable and will not repeat in future, so try to live and feel this as much as possible.

Soon Phillippe pulled the parachute and suddenly the whole fast gust of wind came to a halt with silence all over. It was like I just travelled from one dimension of the world to another. The silence was so pure that I wanted to spend my whole life with it. At this moment Phillipe gave me the parachute controls to try some left and right turns and it was absolutely amazing.

So, as we landed, there was a bit of tears in my eyes, as this was the finest moment I have seen in my life. I know this is temporary, but this is the moment where I think I always wanted to stay forever.

We all took a selfie as both of them were my lifesavers from 15000 feet of height and they were quite happy with no unnecessary nervousness in me while jumping.

So, this is how I did my life’s first Skydiving, and for most of the people reading this article, this was just extreme, but I think there are lots of extreme things available in the world for me to just live.

So just waiting for another adventure, I just signed off and will be back with another jaw-dropping and goose-bumpy adventure in future.

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