This was one of the base trips I will never forget. It was my second time in Thailand, and second time out here in Tonsai. It was also my first time performing a suspension BASE jump. I never planned on becoming the 10th person in the world to ever make a suspension BASE jump.
It all started the previous year when I met Stanislav. He was the first one to take me up to the main jump on the beach. It wasn’t until after we made a jump together that I found out some of the things he had been doing.
I also found out that he was part of the group of Russian jumpers who made the first ever suspension BASE jumps.
At the time I met him only two people in the world have ever done one of these jumps. We did not look like two people who would typically hang out together. Stanislav is a Russian with dreadlocks, tattoos on his face and body. I had a clean cut military hair cut, no tattoos, and no piercings. The common love for base jumping brought us together, and he started to show me part of his world. I watched him pierce a few people and attach them to ropes, pulling them up into the air to hang on their skin. I watched how professional he was with piercings, and keeping everything sterile.
When I got home from this trip it was hard to explain to people what I had experienced. It was something I never thought that I would do. Then after the days past by I thought to my self, “I could have been the third person to ever make a suspension base jump.”
The next year I found out that I had some free time. I decided to go back to Thailand again. When I realized I was going back I knew I would meet up with Stanislav again. I thought just maybe I would want to try a regular suspension. After making some good jumps, and meeting lots of new people, I casually brought it up to Stanislav that I was thinking about doing a suspension. He replied, “When you want to make a jump, come talk to me.”
After this he started telling me about how they have been using a new deployment method for suspension BASE that is softer, with a more reliable opening. When he explained how everything worked it made me a lot more comfortable with the idea.