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Blog / / Years Are Not an Obstacle to Achieving Your Dream
BLOG
Years Are Not an Obstacle to Achieving Your Dream
One of my lifelong wishes was to fly a paraglider. But flying is not just about wishing - besides determination and courage, ideal weather conditions are necessary. I live in Vršac, which is known for its constant air currents that make it suitable for paragliding, and so the sight of paragliders gliding through the sky for hours on end is not uncommon.

For my fiftieth birthday, my friends gave me a tandem paraglider flight over Vršac I was overjoyed, so I made an appointment with Goran, who is an experienced pilot in this sport and multiple winner of global and European awards. As it usually happens, the wish came true a year later when I met Goran and asked him the question ’When are we flying?’, and he answered – ’If the conditions are favourable tomorrow – we’ll go!’

On the Vršac hill, there is a takeoff point that even hosts world paragliding championships. Excited and in suspense, I dress sporty, with the obligatory helmet. Goran, an experienced pilot, prepares the equipment while explaining in detail the plan and details of the flight. Although I've watched flights over the city several times before, the excitement is growing. The weather is perfect, the wind is favourable, and dozens of paragliders are already circling above us, enjoying the freedom that this sport provides.

Tandem flying is not demanding and does not require previous experience. It is enough to have a desire for adventure and to entrust oneself to an experienced pilot. After mounting the equipment and checking each individual element, we put on helmets and caps. The paragliding sail, specially designed for tandem flights, is ready for action, while safety belts and navigation equipment are carefully checked. The back-up parachute, communication and navigation equipment, without which you can't fly, are there. Everything is ready for takeoff into the adventure above Vršac.

All I have to do at Goran's signal is run together with him towards the slope, sit in my seat in front of him, and enjoy. Off we go. We take a few steps and suddenly there's resistance, as if I were running in place, I couldn't feel the ground beneath my feet - the parachute lifts us off the ground. We descend for a moment, then a few more steps, and then it happens - the parachute floats above our heads as we rise high above the treetops.

I'm breathless as adrenaline rushes through my bloodstream - this is phenomenal!

The experience is special, different from anything I've experienced before. I enjoy the feeling of freedom, the view, and the different perspective. There's a smile on my face. I wonder why I didn't do this earlier?

I feel relaxed, without the slightest fear of heights, although I usually feel uneasy when climbing a ladder. As we fly, we talk, I wonder how old the oldest person who flew tandem was - I find out he was 83! This information gives me additional reassurance and motivation – age is not an obstacle to fulfilling your dreams; we need to be open to new experiences and live a full life.

After about fifteen minutes of flying, we slowly begin to descend and land on a meadow specially prepared for paragliders. The pilot and I are actively involved in the landing, just as we were during takeoff. I feel a little sad that this adventure is coming to an end. That flight will remain etched in my memory as a unique, positive experience that I will treasure for a lifetime.
AUTHOR
Alena Pajić
project manager at Hemofarm Foundation