The monsoons were just around the corner when I moved to Manali, a very commercialized mountain city, yet a haven for adventure and extreme sports in India.
It was also the first time, I relived an entire experience of learning to stand up on my feet and walk again. This time at least three feet off the ground. I was learning to slackline!
Noe, a French kite surfer, trying to balance on a slackline
Being only a rookie in the army of adventure sports enthusiasts, I was clueless yet determined to walk that distance. Limitations were only in terms of my inability to master the art of balance in the first go. The more I failed, the more I wanted to get back on the line. The line would throw me off like a ferryboat in a wavestorm. Although trees were the only anchor that kept me steadfast, I was being deceived by a false sense of security. I could either move ahead in the raging storm or wait for my vessel to be beaten and drowned and so I took my first step ahead!
Jerry relaxing after a long day at the Suru Boulder Fest
I fell, I bruised, I got back at it again, only to balance on the line a wee longer than before. The sheer fun and burning desire to reach to the other end strengthened my demeanor, and in a week I was doing some pansy cha-cha-cha moves while swaying my arms on the line. I could finally walk!
Now, was the time when I could delve into the intricacies and attribute my regressive progression level to numerous other factors. For starters, we always used an Industrial container belt instead of a proper trick line. The ratchet was always faulty and would snap if one exerted a little more pressure than usual. Trivial it may seem but an issue of grave concern, we had no tree protectors!
Sandeep Maity concentrating and meditating
It is only when I started to understand the sport, I comprehended the responsibilities as well. Thankfully, when there is a dearth of professional adventure sports gear sellers in India, Project RockFace came up with an indigenous trick line to serve the growing slacklining community in the eastern realm.
With better equipment, I can now focus on enhancing my skill. Now I don’t fall and climb back on trick lines. I bounce back!
Get your own set-up from Project Rockface here and get walking!