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  1. You beat me to it! I was just thinking about writing up how the day went. I completed both AFF 1 and 2 on Sunday and it was a great day! I did the ground training Thursday while it was pouring rain. I was the only one for that day so I got a private lesson with Elsinore’s AFF director Barry who is awesome. On Sunday I got to the DZ early on Barry's recommendation to avoid the rush and got on the second load of the day. Just as with my tandem I had nerves on the way up, and the negative temps at altitude didn't help, but they disappeared as soon as I took my position in the door. My practice touches went perfectly and I loved the forward movement part which I don't believe all schools do on AFF 1. My chute opened perfectly and I flew the pattern to a stand up landing which made me so stoked! An experienced jumper complimented me as he walked by and I got a round of congratulations on the short van ride back to the other side of the field. During the debrief my main instructor Tina said that sometimes they do like to look into a students eyes to see if they are all there during a jump but said at no time did she feel that was necessary and she was really happy with the jump. Barry also told the schools manager later that I did really well which was great to hear. The signs I did get were to arch more on the way out and to extend my legs more while in free all. As for the glasses situation, Barry tested a few options with me and wearing flex vision over my glasses seemed the best way to go. I never felt at all like they would come off. As it got busy the schools manager decided to be my instructor on my level 2. During a practice arch on the ground he pinpointed where I could improve - I was arching too much from my chest instead of my hips. This little change definitely made a difference and improved my next jump - especially the exit. On the way up both my instructors smiled a bunch and quizzed me repeatedly on the relax signal probably to emphasize the having fun part. Again everything went great and the exit was smoother with my new arch. The canopy portion was a bit more interesting with the winds at 13 and near the student limit. This is probably one area being a pilot did help since I knew about crabbing and the process came naturally. This time I wasn't able to stand up on landing and gently fell over. Both my instructors were thrilled though with both the pattern and flare and told me the winds shifted at the very end. I was at the complete opposite end of the runway on this landing and saw the van leave thinking it would come get me but it soon became apparent it was going for someone else. As I started the walk back a group of people was gathering around someone on the ground on the other side of the runway. Ofcourse it is was only natural to assume the worst and I was about to run over and see if I could help as an EMT when I heard the sirens. I don't want to speculate too much since I don't know the whole story but from what the instructors said, the student on their AFF 1 pulled the toggles to head level and never flared. Apparently they tumbled a lot on impact. It was a slightly negative end to the day but the student should be ok and I had an awesome time still. The next step is tunnel time. At Elsinore if you do 15 minutes with an approved instructor After level 2 and then you do well on level 3 you get to skip level 4. I see it as a no lose situation and I can work on my legs. I had certainly read about it but one thing I realized Sunday is just how friendly and approachable everyone is. I talked to a number of people while waiting for my jumps who were super friendly and just excited to get out and jump. I even had another instructor who heard about my glasses issue and basically said to forget about the issue and have fun. I have definitely found my new addiction.
  2. Success! It looks like I am cleared to jump at both Perris and Elsinore. I emailed Dan as suggested (Thanks William) and he forwarded it to the school manager who said it wouldn’t be a problem assuming I did fine during the ground portion as usual. Elsinore asked for a letter from my eye doctor just stating my condition and it’s limitations as well as the contact info for my flight instructor (at one point it came up that I used to fly and they thought it would be helpful to give him a call and make sure it didn’t affect me as a pilot). The AFF director at Elsinore even gave me a call and said if I got them those 2 things he didn’t see it being a problem. He asked me to come to the DZ this weekend so he could show me around and even pick out the best goggles/glasses/contacts combo. I am leaning towards Elsinore so assuming I am cleared I should do be able to do AFF 1 next weekend hopefully. I appreciate all the advice!
  3. I appreciate all the advice and as recommended I went to talk to an instructor at Skydive San Diego today. I didn't actually get to talk to one though since the front desk person (who was actually very nice) went to ask one in an office for me. Basically though, they won't consider it in any way. I called Perris and they said no way as well. It looks like my last option is Elsinore.
  4. I did a tandem jump with Skydive San Diego when I turned 18 a few years ago and loved it. Now I would like to do an AFF 1 jump and probably continue through the AFF series. The problem however is that I have Photophobia, which is an extreme sensitivity to light. All I have to do is wear sunglasses or tinted goggles and everything is fine - I can see without them but it is incredibly uncomfortable and causes me to squint aggressively. When I mentioned it to Skydive San Diego they told me the instructor has to be able to see my eyes for AFF jumps so I couldn't wear tinted goggles. Are there any other school within a reasonable distance of San Diego that might be able to accommodate me? Or are any hopes of getting certified completely gone?