Off The Record
105-year-old who still goes abseiling credits all to Whisky
You see, when people say ‘go have fun’, they mean do things like partying, clubbing or even domestic things like reading and watching films.
Adventure sports are not ‘fun’ per se. At least, not for me. This is where people who are extremely full of life and lust for adventure and adrenaline, come in. People who live life according to the popular quote: “Live young and fast”.
Among popular adventure sports, is the phenomenon called abseiling. The dictionary defines this as “[to] descend a rock face or other near-vertical surface by using a doubled rope coiled round the body and fixed at a higher point.”
You would normally want to associate someone like Bear Grylls to be interested in something like this, as you read this article online, munching on chips and lying down on a soft bed, complaining on back-ache thanks to spending most of your time on a chair, in an air-conditioned office.
Well, what if told you that there is in this world a man who is a 105 years old, and loves to abseil?
You probably would not even want to believe me.
Well, you should. It is the truth.
What’s more? He credits it to whisky.
[You might want to say ‘Damn’ about now.]
Jack Reynolds, 105, is already the world record holder for being the oldest person to ride a rollercoaster, something that gives most people the heebie-jeebies, and is also the oldest one to complete three trial abseils. Ironically and strangely enough, he needs a trolley to walk in real life.
Jack has strange secret to his old age: good ol’ whisky.
Despite doing other things to remain in quite tip-top shape, Jack absolutely swears by the malt elixir: his youngest daughter has gone one record to say that he drinks it with his morning tea and drinks it with his nightcap lemonade.
The world has a lot of issues with raging alcoholics and diseased ones too, but whisky seems to have been a blessing in disguise for Jack Reynolds. So much so, according to his family, whisky is his medicine for all pains, be it a cough, cold or anything on the more serious side of the medical spectrum.
Speaking of eventful lives, Reynolds was born in the year the Titanic sank; and where we associate the infamous iceberg with the ship, Jack ended up becoming the oldest person to complete the ice bucket challenge, at the age of 102.
At the turn of the century of his life, he could have very well chosen a life of peace, quiet and family time; instead, this jolly old man has gone on a rave and ended up on the Guinness book of World Records, doing things other people can only dream of daring.
Back in April, he graced the Flamingo land theme-park in Yorkshire and rode its infamous Twistosaurus rollercoaster, at a whopping age, becoming the oldest person to do so. What’s more, he actually wanted to go on the more dangerous one in the park, one that goes upside-down thrice. But, he was denied that pleasure, as the park authorities do not allow people of such age-groups to ride that for fear of their blacking out, thanks to a sudden plummeting of their blood pressure.
Where many youngsters cannot muster the courage to get inked, this father of four, in order to celebrate his 104th birthday, got his date of birth, and the nickname ‘Jacko’ tattooed on his right arm. He shows it off with a beaming smile dripping with pride.
This year itself, he flew a vintage ‘tiger moth’ aircraft too, becoming the oldest person to do so in the world.
But you want to know the absolutely best part in this inspirational story?
He does everything for charity. The former railroad worker derives all his adrenaline-charged fun as he does his part to better the lives of others.
And that is it, the essence of a life of adventure. Have fun, see your share of the world’s challenges and help those who need it.
And just like Jack, take a swig now and then.