I’ve always had a problem with motion sickness. I have no shame when it comes to puking in public as I’m no stranger to vomit bags. It’s never been the upside in my love for travel and would never stop me from experiencing something new. In essence, I’ve vomited in most airplanes I’ve been in: Boeing’s, airbuses, propellar planes… now I can officially add the aerobatic plane, the RV-8 to my list.
Thanks to my good friend Wick, he offered to take me on a “joy ride” in his new baby. I was extremely excited because knowing what your husband and friends do every day, there’s a part of you that kind of understands, but will never truly experience what they do. Damn the rules… but they’re there for a reason. So I was like an asian in a ramen shop; extremely excited! I was going to go flying with a fighter pilot that was notorious for going fast and taking chances.
Knowing that my motion sickness would be a hinder, I tried to eat something light since I was already running on fumes. I’ve always felt worse if my stomach was empty so at least a light meal would hold me over. We arrived at his hangar and the plane was beautiful. It was bright, shiny and ruby red. It wanted to be in the sky. He got it ready and I saddled up in the back and buckled in. I could barely see anything other than Wick’s head, but I knew it would level out once we were flying. Off we went.
Even though it was just the take off it was still an exciting rush! You feel so much more than in a commercial plane. And yes.. I already felt it.. the butterflies and tummy drops like you’re on a roller coaster. We flew over town checking out the scenary and played find my house. Then it was time. AHHHHHHHHHhhHHH! A lovely surprise turn from Wick sent not only the plane spinning, but my head as well. Vertigo washed over me as he laughed and said, “I didn’t know you’d be a screamer!”
From that point, it had probably been only 15 minutes from when we took off – 10 of which was on the runway. Haha! Okay, I had to last longer and experience a little more of what these strapping fighter pilots were capable of. I gathered my breaths and prepared myself for the next moves – up, around, and down we went, a roll here, a roll there, and upsy daisy! Not only did he just do one trick, he did three in a row. I’m not sure what they were specifically called, but we apparently pulled around 3 Gs. The pressure on the body was intense as your brain feels like it’s getting smooshed to the back of your skull. I had no sense of direction other than the glimmer of the sun as we tucked and rolled this way and that.
Now it was my turn. He let me take the controls to feel out the plane but it was already too late. My body had made up it’s mind. My turn to fly turned into my time to puke. The 3 tricks at 3 Gs did it. Thankfully, I prepared a ziplock baggy with me. By the way, no need to double up as ziplock bags are solid! You know what else was solid? Most of my lunch that came up. And you know what? That was one of the worst lunches I could’ve possibly eaten knowing it would come back up. But of course I’m a sucker for my korean food and I just had to have that kimchi. KIMCHI! The ABSOLUTE… WORSE… smelling vomit… in the WORLD! I was in a world of hurt as well as Wick’s nose. Haha what a small ass cockipit to be stuck in with a kimchi vomiting girl in 100 degree weather. No… bueno.
I puked on and off and felt nauseated for the duration of the trip home. The smell was excrutiating. Trying to get fresh air was the only thing on both of our minds. We landed and took in the smell of fresh air. I got some water to rinse out the horrible taste of spicy, fermented cabbage, and finally became stable. Overall, this “joy ride” turned out to be 10% joy and 90% agony, giving this experience 100% aerobatical satisfaction!
Don’t let this story scare you from ever experiencing a ride in an aerobatical plane. I’m sure the pilot it will ease you into the tricks. In this case, sometimes pain between friends makes life a little funnier. We got a good laugh out of it and it won’t stop me from going up again… minus the kimchi of course.