Soarin’, Flyin’.

The town of Balboa, California is chill, brah. I walked into a bodega to buy a bottle of water, and the cashier, a tan dude with a backwards hat and worn out flip flops, took approximately 2 minutes to end his phone call after I approached the counter and took out my cash. The checkout process followed this trend, taking an exorbitant amount of time for a seemingly small task.

I ended up in Balboa after I told my sister we should do something for the blog while I visited her over Labor Day. After determining that she would likely return from surfing with at least 3 injuries and that whale watching sounded less-than-thrilling, we agreed on parasailing.


We were in a group with 9 other people. A couple who couldn’t keep their hands off each other, 3 tweens, and a pair of very quiet women. Once the boat got moving, the crew introduced themselves, oozing showmanship.

“Hi everyone. I’m Sebastian.” He pointed to the other crew member, who was making some sort of arrangements that seemed entirely superfluous. “This is also Sebastian.”

Yes. They were both named Sebastian. Nobody seemed nearly as amused by this as Jesse and I were, so we quietly evaluated the Sebastians to ourselves throughout the remainder of the trip so we could pick our favorite.

Once the boat started moving, I felt like this:

Jesse conveniently forgot to offer me an anti-nausea pill after taking one for herself. Best sister ever. Luckily, I hid my seasickness well by talking too much and singing along with the reggae music that the Sebastians were blasting.

Take-off time. The touchy-feely couple went first, and the woman had her phone in her hand the whole time. Seeing them take off gave Jesse and I each a jolt of fear, and we were completely terrified from that point forward.

The tweens were next, then the quiet ladies. The latter group came back looking positively mortified or nauseous or some combination of these.

We strapped in for our turn as the last group, and I was prepared to poop my pants. Jesse was probably crying. I was mostly upset because I had to tell the Sebastians I weigh 30 pounds more than my sister and when I did they laughed at my puffed out belly.

I held on incredibly tight—so much so my hands began to sweat. And without any glitz or glamour, we were in the air, rising much higher than I was comfortable with.

Once we were at our peak height, it was actually remarkably relaxing. My sister and I just chatted for a bit and cracked jokes as the Sebastians very slowly reeled us back to the boat. Our flight lasted about 8 minutes and ended with a dip into the water up to our knees. Jesse did not like this dip, and she was very vocal about it.


Once we were safely back on the boat, the Sebastians dropped us back off at the dock while Jesse vehemently declared that she would never do that again. Check out the gallery below for pictures of the whole adventure! And thanks to Jesse for the great birthday gift. Love you sis!

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Next week: Cole takes a leap.

Do you like my blog, but wish it was about someone other than me exploring the Netherlands? Well, you’re in luck! Check out my friend Riley’s blog at