by Lisa Lipkind Leibow, Author of Smart Women’s Fiction

Dinner at the Leibow home, February 18, 2010

I said, “I had lunch with my friends today.”

He said, “yeah?”

I said, “I told them about my Valentine’s gift. The coupon for trapeze lessons. You should have heard Donna. She said, ‘You wait. He’ll install a trapeze in the bedroom now!’”

“Ceiling’s too low.”

Well, there’s no trapeze in the bedroom. The whole idea of flying on a trapeze fascinated me but I needed to build confidence and carve out time. I worried that I could not even do ONE chin up/pull up/whatever you call it. I worried about stretching enough to maintain flexibility.

I started doing push-ups, a little weight training, and kept my eye toward the few weeks of summer when all three sons were busy with camp.

Still can’t do a chin up to save my life, but while my kids are at camp, I finally found time and guts enough to cash in on my Valentine’s gift and found a new hobby!

Turns out the momentum of the swing makes you weightless – no need to be able to lift my entire weight. What I didn’t consider was climbing a very tall ladder about twenty times in two hours! My butt was killing me the next day!

I did it! I have taken five lessons so far and I can’t wait to go back! It’s a blast. Here’s a video clip to prove it. Click on the hyperlink below. (Oh… How I wish I knew how to embed video properly!)

trapeze 1

Remember, this was taken during my second lesson! I’m still working on “the catch.” There’s much fodder for fiction in my new hobby. The diverse reasons people are attracted to this activity: facing fear, sense of adventure, working through life changes like a tough break up or job transition, and more.

As for gathering information for a unique setting, I have hit the jackpot!

Even more adventure: During my first class, construction workers outside accidentally hit a gas main and we had to evacuate. Everyone stayed safe in real life. But you know me… the wheels are turning. I’m starting to envision a high action scene in a trapeze school tent, complet with explosions that send the students flying a little further than they anticipated. Who knows? This could turn up in my next story.

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