It had been more than an year that we had moved to Paris and still hadn’t had a taste of the thrill at Asterix or DisneyLand.
I was driving to work on a usual Wednesday. Nice weather, everything calm, not a lot of people in Paris as the french have the habit of taking holidays during August. And when I say habit it’s like a rule. Entire business buildings close up their offices. It’s that important for them.
Had created a ritual of taking the drive to work to think about things that happened to me the last day or the last period, so I was thinking about what new things had I been doing recently, and what new challenges had I accepted.
Thinking about it I realized that I wasn’t pushing my limits in any fields of my life. My job was going smooth, learning new things but not that challenging, my relationship was calm and peaceful and we were enjoying one another, my personal projects were advancing slowly.
I suddenly felt a need to do something crazy. Just like in the days where I would wake up in the morning and decide to go on a road trip. In less than a minute I found myself calling a friend of mine and in 30 seconds we decided to go to Asterix and get some adrenaline in our systems on the rollercoasters.
The week passed quickly and Sunday morning at 10:30 we were at the gates of the park waiting in line with some hundreds of people seeking excitement. We took a map and pointed out the three giant rollercoasters we wanted to do: the blue one Oziris, the yellow one Goudurix, and the wooden one Tonnere de Zeus (Zeu’s thunder).
The lines were huge and because we had the girls with us we started slow with two water splash trains and a small rollercoaster to have a preview for the girls, as they were afraid. First one was nice but pretty boring but the second one was already more fun. Several downfalls, some tunnels and a pretty high downfall that would end up in water at the end. We all got wet but were thrilled. We wanted to do more. So we headed to Goudurix, the one with a lot of spins. Had seen videos on the internet before and have to admit was a afraid. Here is an example Goudurix.
On the way there fear started saying it’s words. As we were approaching the girls started having doubts on whether they should take the ride or not and by the time we got to the gates they had decided not to. For me and my friend there was no way back. We had talked about it, bragged about having the courage to do it and now it was time to actually do it. We got in the queue, a long queue, a very long queue. By the time we got into the rollercoaster we had talked so much about it, seen so many people get out of it: kids, parents, girls, boys that our fear had almost disappeared.
As we were reaching the top I said to myself: I will not accept fear and I will not scream nor close my eyes. I wanted to be more than a simple ride, I wanted to be an exercise. All the ride my friend screamed form the top of his lungs, just like all the other behind us (were were in the front seats; btw these are the best seats), but I hadn’t made one sound. I was controlling my breathing, was concentrated on what’s next and was enjoying it in the mean time. The ride was super awesome. The speed, the highs, the 3-60s, everything had been made to offer adrenaline and awesome sensations. When we got out I was so pumped up with adrenaline that I started speaking romanian to our english friend. Only by the time I was done they pointed it out and started laughing at me. In any case, I was ready for the next one.
On the way to the wooden one had decided to convince the girls to come with us. Applied all the techniques I knew and got them in the queue. I know I like to think that we convinced them but I think it was more the people standing in the queue: little girls and boys, grandparent, etc that made them accept the challenge. It’s always easier to go in groups. I am sure that if we were to have been just by ourselves they wouldn’t have done it.
The ride was more than we had imagined. Different from the previous one as it had a lot of steep downfalls and the fact that is was all made of wood, induced uncertainty. Just to have an idea of the ride you can watch this: Wooden rollercoaster.
When we got to the finish, my girlfriend was smiling and was so excited that she wanted to do it again. She had faced one of her greatest fears, as she hadn’t done anything as crazy as that in her entire life. For me and for us it was a very important step that she had taken. Our lives together, our relationship, her life was going to benefit of this courage she found.
For some of us it doesn’t seem that much but if you think about all your friends, family,people you know and meet that don’t take their lives, careers, relationships to the next level and settle with normal instead of reaching for more, you will probably realize that it’s that one step in the queue that they don’t take.
The reason I decide to talk about this experience is because I learned something important that day and so did the girls. Life is like a queue; you are never alone, as you can surely find someone else who has done what you are about to do already; you are not scared of the ride itself, but of the step you have to take to get in the queue and stay there until it’s too late to back down.
They say God has an unusual way of sending gifts, as he wraps them in fears and problems. Your job is to find the power to break through that wrap.
I had previously decided to take on a new challenge each month so it wasn’t that I had to do when I got out of the rollercoaster. For me it was the decision to keep on going no matter what and to finish what I had previously planned.
We didn’t have time to take the blue one so in the spirit of the moment, I bought a season pass to come again and get in the blue one and of course, repeat the experience of Goudurix and Zeu’s thunder, so as to make sure I wasn’t afraid anymore.
My advice/suggestion for you my friend is to take on new challenges each month as it will help you find a power within you aren’t aware of.