‘Make it short & snappy’
Z for Zorbing orbits in Surrey
Adrenalin sports are usually reserved for daredevil dwellings such as Queenstown in New Zealand, not just around the corner from where I grew up in nice sensible Surrey surburbia. Strapped in and spinning literally ‘head over heels’ proved to be an unusual date.
‘Just the facts please’
- Go Zorbing London (formerly Pod Events)
- Website: http://www.zorbing.co.uk/
- Twitter: @GoZorbingLondon
- Phone: 0845 430 3322
- Address: Salmons Lane, Whyteleafe, Surrey CR3 0HB
- Email: email@example.com
- Cost: from £49.99 for two people.
‘I’ve got a cup of tea, tell me all about it…’
So, the final day of my alphabet challenge brings me to Z. This ‘Z’ is the opposite of getting some ‘zzz’s as I’m back to adrenalin ‘sports’.
This time I was harnessed into a giant inflatable squishy hamster ball opposite my partner who had daringly taken the risk of being in direct firing line if I did end up feeling queasy and becoming sick! Ah, what you do for love!
Fortunately, it was all pretty smooth sailing in the end peppered with quite a few screams from my end.
Having driven past this particular road many many times in my childhood, I had no idea of the hidden antics within the depths of the woodland. In fact I thought I knew the area so well, I wasn’t convinced we had the right address when we parked up. Cautiously I followed a wooden boardwalk path through what looked like abandoned Go Ape like constructions and was relieved to eventually spot signage for zorbing.
J and I turned a corner and saw a clearing with a large hill, and thought this looked more like it. Much more “ex-hill-arating” as their website comically says. My focus was on the net at the bottom to check it looked sturdy and we wouldn’t be bouncing off into a major road nearby.
We were given two choices: harness zorbing where we were securely fastened and dry, or hydro zorbing where you were loose and slushing around in about 40 litres of water (warm in winter). We agreed that the latter idea sounded too wet and uncomfortable. I had also previously heard tales about how, with two untethered bodies in there, there was a greater chance of injury by falling and slamming into one another with no control.
We opted for the more sensible harness option.
Getting in was the funniest bit, You had to throw yourself into the hole, praying you didn’t get stuck, and then twist and strap yourself into the seat which was inevitably at an awkward angle. It was a tad claustrophobic, but with the ball being clear you could see something through it, and the experience was over very quickly.
The ball was balanced at the top of the hill with a bar holding it back, which when raised sent you – with a swift push from the team I’m assuming – hurtling down the hill at speeds of up to 25 mph.
J selected to go backwards with no sense of when we were being detached and launched and as a result he found it hilarious, laughing loudly all the way down. I, on the other hand, decided to face towards the direction of travel. As I was facing towards the hill, I could see it coming towards me which I found quite unsettling. I’m not used to the sensation of going round and round in quick succession, like I was stuck in a tumble dryer, and found it quite nauseating. Although I’m pleased to say J was spared of any unpleasantries from me feeling unwell.
As you only got one go, it was a very quick process. Luckily as I wasn’t that enamoured I didn’t mind too much, but I can imagine if you loved it, it could turn out to be an expensive hobby!
Being such a quick experience, we opted to get a DVD to record our expressions of the moment. Writing this article has reminded us neither of us have watched it yet! So maybe not the best use of money. We’ll try to dig it out and watch the cringeworthy footage back one day soon.
I enjoyed the novelty of being able to do such an unusual activity so close to home. It was so quick you might even be able to fit it in your lunch hour if you’re based nearby!