Mighty Life List: Go Parasailing? Check.

This is my new friend Amber. Also pictured, Amber’s red glasses. Hello there, cute glasses.

A few months ago Amber emailed me her Life List, you may remember her as the one who wants to gallop on a horse. I read her list, started clicking around her site, and decided I liked her very much. She was baking pies for homeless people, saving up for a trip to Paris, and trying to break the world record for Most Checkers Stacked in the Palm of One’s Hand. Since I’d had a couple glasses of wine, I obviously sent her a note:


I think I like you. And I am also afraid of horses. Do you want to do this galloping thing together? How long do you think it would take? Like, a lifetime, or 8 hours or so? I’m betting on the latter. Will you be at SxSW? I will, and I bet there are horses, even in Austin. I think we should do it.

We will need hats.


To which Amber replied:


I like you, too. We should gallop together, even though the thought makes me terrified. But I’ll pretend I’m brave.

I’ll be at SxSW in March, for the interactive portion, and I’m sure they’ll have horses somewhere driveable from where we’ll be in Austin.

What sort of hats should we wear?


(Actually, the original notes included some fear-based Christopher Reeves references as well, which are not amusing in a public forum, but you get the jist.)

Thus began our email courtship and life-list plotting. We called some Austin riding instructors who informed us that we didn’t have time to acquire galloping skills, so we decided to try parasailing (#60 on Amber’s list).

As you may recall, parasailing is also on my list, and I had some misgivings about attempting it again. We decided that if parasailing didn’t work out, Amber would give birth instead (#51).

We both arrived at SxSW having never even spoken on the phone, so we met up in the lobby to assess any latent serial killer vibes before finalizing our plans.

As it turns out, both Amber and her husband Rob are lovely, and gave no signs of verging on murderous rampage.


And so we took a cab out to the lake where we met the folks from Airscape Parasail. The drove the boat out, strapped us in to our harnesses and…


Parasailing is incredible. You just float up from the back of the boat like Superman! In a life vest! With your new friend Amber!

Everything was so peaceful, it didn’t even occur to me to worry that we were nearly a thousand feet up. The feeling was the opposite of zip lining. It was slow and quiet, like floating in space.

They reeled us in so gently that we just set our feet on the back of the boat and walked onboard. I liked it.

And it turns out I was right about liking Amber too.

32 thoughts on “Mighty Life List: Go Parasailing? Check.

  1. How completely and thoroughly adorable and fun! Great idea, great picts! I’m a loyal follower of Amber’s blog and podcast and I’m glad I found you through her!


  2. This looks like so much fun! But it also looks scary. I am deathly afraid of heights and am trying to add some items to my life list to help met get over that.
    You look so happy in all of these photos! yay for fun times, trying new activities, and making new friends!

    P.S. those 3 things I said I was going to do this month – got one down and one in progress!


  3. This story makes me happy. The pictures make me smile.

    I’m plotting taking a mutual friend of ours on a trapeze lesson with me in NYC. It’s on her Life List and on my 40 by 40 List.


  4. My sweetie and parasailed EXACTLY where you did – over Lake Travis. It was exactly as you described…like floating. My next air adventure will be in a hot air balloon. Really excited about it for my 10th wedding anniversary!


  5. Ambers in red glasses are always awesome. Always.

    So is parasailing, though my authority on that subject may be questionable, since the last time I went parasailing, I was still in the first bloom of youth, the one that isn’t worried about losing limbs or plummeting to my death or run-on sentences. Oh, wait. Still not afraid of run-on sentences.

    Glad you guys had fun!


  6. New friends are so fun! Glad you girls had a stellar time conquering fears together! Your faces are priceless…you know, in a good way.


  7. ooh, that sounds fun.

    For the record, I’ve been paragliding but not parasailing. There was no weird helicopter machine thingy in my paragliding, but we did jump off a hill. That part was super scary, but the whole rest of the ride was awesome.

    And now, because of your post, I really want to go parasailing!


  8. So I’m updating my ipod with podcasts for tomorrow’s errands: *whistle whistle whistle* (upload, upload, upload) Slate Culture Gabfest, check. Hey Brooklyn, check. Hmm… Amber Marlow Blatt? Huh. Is that new? Has her name always been listed next to the podcast title? Prob just never noticed before… *whistle whistle whistle* Let’s see, what else can I listen to tomor…Whah huzzah?!? Amber…Blatt! (Dim, 15 watt bulb glows above head) Is it?!? CAN’T be! Click over to Mightygirl, reread post – it IS!

    How lovely! I adore your blog and her podcasts – glad to see goodness joining forces. Just had to share!


  9. SO. AWESOME. I am terrified of heights and my palms are sweating just looking at those photos. I wrinkle the pages of my magazines when I fly. It’s gross.
    This was my last blog-stop before bed. But now you have me all jacked up and wanting to do something scary. But fun.


  10. Just wanted to thank you so much for the inspiration. My life list is still a work in progress, but I got up the courage to post it on my (somewhat new) blog today. And now I already feel more motivated to start attacking my list!


  11. Excellent Maggie! I think I may add parasailing to my list now too! Amanda, I just posted my life list today too!! But I only have 55 things as yet. I think the whole thing is incredibly exciting!


  12. So, this is what I think you should do.

    Seeing a total solar eclipse is not on your life list…but it should be.

    Because in July, a total solar eclipse is going to pass over Easter Island. It costs over $9k to go and be there, in total darkness for over 4 minutes.

    I, obviously, cannot afford to do this. I can’t even pay off my credit cards. But you, you could get someone to sponsor you! And take amazing photos of eerily lit giant head sculptures! And make me feel like I was there, at least in spirit.

    Just a thought. I’m sleep deprived and dreaming up fantasy vacations instead of writing my thesis.


  13. I love this, not only a life list item accomplished, but new friends. 🙂 Before you put out the call for our own life lists, last August I decided to suck it up and learn to ride a horse…I had always always wanted to, but was petrified. It has been so awesome in so many ways, but I am at 6 months and just learning to canter, so it takes some time. You should still totally do it!


  14. I think that’s pretty much the most awesome blog post I’ve ever read, anywhere. Because you made friends over the internet the same way you would’ve made friends in Kindergarten.


  15. Parasailing scared me shitless when I did it. Maybe it’s because I went solo and I had time to assess the knots. Sketchy!


  16. What a fun adventure! How wonderful that through your blog you are able to meet new friends and check of items of your life list together 🙂 I love reading your blog and have started a life list of my own…thank you for being such a wonderful inspiration.


  17. wow. an amazing story. I love how the blogger-interwebs world brings like minded people together. good for you crossing things off your list! and great story!!


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