With more than a little bit of trepidation, I climbed the makeshift tower from which people leapt off into the lazy Nam Song River below.
At the platform on the fifth level, I took one look at the rope swing which I was supposed to hang on to for dear life while leaping off the tower, and shuddered.
My friends behind me, too, couldn’t bring themselves to leap off the tower.
But we did anyway, after we saw someone jumping off it.
The place is Vang Vieng in Laos, and it’s yet another example of the crazy things which people do on holidays.
I mean, you wouldn’t throw yourself off a flimsy five-storey structure at home.
So why should you do that on vacation?
And indeed, people have been seriously hurt or even died going off the giant swing or engaging in other dangerous water sports in Vang Vieng (note: most of the riverside bars offering these activities have been shut since 2012).
Despite the obvious dangers, people still do it anyway.
And why so?
Maybe because travel just seems better when you do something a little bit crazy, or outside your comfort zone?
I mean, I love travelling to places where I don’t speak the language.
That’s so I can get a cheap thrill out of uttering the few foreign words I memorised from the guidebook and realising that hey, people do understand me.
I also love trying bizarre food.
Scorpions, silkworms, duck embryos, chicken sashimis?
Bring them on.
But I especially love activities which can get your heart racing.
Like climbing a glacier in New Zealand, for instance.
I’m no mountaineer, so I definitely don’t know anything about using crampons and ice picks.
And yet, there I was, hiking up the Fox Glacier on a guided walk.
To add to the excitement, our guide pointed out deep crevasses which can swallow us up if we’re not careful.
And because of our lack of experience with the crampons, there were some points where we slid on the ice.
But we survived to tell the tale.
And perhaps that’s the rush which travellers live for when they do something crazy and emerge unscathed.
So what about you? What are some of the crazy things you’ve done overseas?