"Since I was 13 years old, like everyone else I look out the windows of a commercial aircraft, and I'm fascinated by it," Laforet said. "I see every little intersection, the police cars, the stadiums, and you wonder what's going on down there."
Laforet spends a lot of time in helicopters, but whereas most choppers might hover as high as a few hundred feet, he asks his pilots to take him up 9,000, 10,000, 11,000 feet and higher -- altitudes helicopters rarely fly.
Credit: Vincent Laforet/Instagram
Eye in the Sky
"Some veteran helicopter pilots refuse to go up there, they're just not comfortable," Laforet said. "I have to say the first time I went up, it was scary, because I've never been that high [with] an open window or door, in a harness leaning out. And you see planes going right underneath you -- your heart skips a beat."
"The only time I ever thought about it was at high altitude over New York," Laforet said. That was when a physicist explained a fall from that high up could last a terrifying 41 seconds. "I'm like, thanks for telling me. Now I know -- that's way too long!"