Catch Me At The BottomPosted: March 20, 2016
A few months ago, i explained that i wanted to do something different and was going to be abseiling down the Europa hotel in Belfast. I signed up and promptly forgot about it. That was until Today.
I arrived nice and early to the hotel because we needed to be there for 12.40 so getting the next train would have been too late. When i got to the hotel, i was immiediatly met by one of the door men, who i never knew existed and taken up to the second floor where the regestration desk for the abseil was located. As soon as we left the lift, we were surrounded by the buzz of people abseiling or who had just abseiled for other charities. I got in and got registered pretty quickly and was able to chat to some of the other people doing it. There were something like 100 people who had been doing it for The Cancer Fund for Children with a further 90 apparently going throughout the day. The hotel does the abseil once a month it seems with the
Belfast Activity centre
Organising the abseils. It was fascinating listening to everything going on and it passed the time nicely until our group arrived. There were 12 of us altogether who were doing it for
Angel Eyes NI
So we were well represented.
First of all, we were given numbers in order of who was going when. We then watched a dvd about the abseil, before eventually getting our harnesses and helmits on. We also had to wear gloves to stop the rope from burning our hands if we held it too tight. The gloves were rather large for my tiny hands lol. All the preparation took about an hour roughly by the time we got everything done that needed to be done.
Eventually, after a bit more waiting, we were taken up to the 12th floor. We then had to clamber up a huge spiral staircase as they are doing quite a lot of work on the roof itself. There were quite a lot of potential trip hazzards, but thankfully i had a fantastic guide to help me. At one point, there was a very very deep step down with nothing to hold on To. I had to be half lifted down because it was so deep, or it felt so deep. to me anyway.
After all that clambering, we were hooked up to the rope which was attached to a ladder. We then had to walk backwards to get the feeling of the rope and see how the rope could support your weight. I thought it was off for more practice work after that, but no, it was the real thing. The nerves were starting to kick in now alright. I kept telling myself that as long as i trusted the instructors and the ropes, i’d be fine. We were once again hooked up to the ropes, and i was told to sit down on the edge of the roof. I then had to hold on to a beam above me, duck down and face backwards with my feet on the wall of the hotel. The instructors were great and told me to take it slowly as i started to descend. It was then time for a photo before I whizzed down. I accidentally pushed away from the wall which made me eventually turn round to face the crowd which you aren’t rally meant to do lol. At least it was near the bottom though. Once i stood up, my legs were likejelly. We then headed back inside to take off our equipment.
There was another guide dog owner who did the abseil as well as me, so our dogs were brought back up to meet us. Ushi did her famous stop when she was taken down to the ground earlier as we thought it would be safer for them to be at street level rather than on the roof. Ushi apparently didn’t make eye contact with anyone the whole time she was away from me and looked as sad as she could until she was reunited with me bless her. We got a printed photo to keep which each of us could buy if we wanted.
We finished up in Robbinsons across the road afterwards for a well earned drink and to compare everyones experiences. It was a brilliant day and i found it easier abseiling down the hotel, than i did when i did it as part of the Grit plus residential i attended a few years ago. I would like to thank everyone for sponsoring me and for the Belfast activity centre for having us. I have attached a photo of me waiting to descend for anyone who is interested.
If you would like to donate to my page, you can still visit
My just giving page
Which stays open for another 3 months. You can also text the code “EUAB69” (all caps no spaces), plus your amount to 70070. Thank you again for the donations.