As the “grownup” of these groups, the Trip Leader, I feel the need to be cool. Not cool as in I hope they like me (I do really hope they like me), but cool as in I’ve got it together. Maybe I should get a tattoo that says “Fake it ‘til you make it.” That tends to be my game plan. Amazingly, they take for granted that I know things and am the authority. It’s great, except for the stupid questions.
It’s basically my job to count them as they get on the bus. I also get to be always excited/enthusiastic. And willing to try everything…except durian. I haven’t built up the courage to try durian yet. A side note: durian is a fruit grown here that smells like feet. Many hotels do not allow it in the door because it stinks so much. Why do we have such a food? That is one of those what the fuck evolution things.
So I do things that I don’t necessarily want to do out of fear. Like zip lining. I am not afraid of heights, just a lot of things that go along with heights. Like ladders and stupid, wobbly bridges.
With the first group I felt the need to play it cool. Don’t let them see you squirm. “It’ll be fun! Don’t worry about being afraid, just go for it!” Then it was my turn. I started to crack. A little squeal when I jumped off. Every time someone said o my god, a Thai guide said o my Buddha. Haha. I laugh when I’m scared. I laughed a lot.
Then we crossed that stupid, wobbly ladder bridge. Not cool. My plan was to just stand on the bridge until it stopped bouncing. I could stand there all day. It’s fine.
Then we got to a platform (there were 49 in total) without a zip line. Like you don’t go across you go down. That’s it. That’s where leader Jodi (who’s gotten really good at faking it) loses her cool. You jump off a platform and just go down. Some Thai dude clips you to a rope that doesn’t look like it’ll hold all of you and you jump, or wiggle your butt towards the end edge, and fall/scream. No. This is where Jodi loses her cool. Leave me here in the trees. I’ll become a tree person.
It got slightly less terrifying the second time around. However, there may or may not be video of me grimacing as I walk across that stupid, wobbly bridge at a glacial pace.