Flight Tuesday 21st

Before reaching the cynicism of adulthood where a combination of bitter experience and a pragmatic knowledge of physics dry up the wellsprings of belief, we all of us know, deep within our hearts, at a most basic level that we CAN fly.
If you have ever bounced or jumped from your bed, pushed the swing to its limits and then leaped at the zenith of its height, or teetered on the diving board before the stinging splash down you will understand the absolute conviction that it should be possible to soar instead of drop. Years and the accompanying accumulation of bruises put paid to this notion and the most we can do is suspend belief with Superman or in extreme cases take up base jumping or buy a wing suit.
Watching our osprey chicks on the big screen at Whinlatter in the week before their take off rekindles the fire for flight in a mix of awe and jealousy. In their innocence they share our first convictions that flight is possible – every move they make , every time they rest, every mouthful of food they eat inextricably leads to one goal only – to defy gravity and fly free of the earth.
And for them it is true. They drive the air with metre span wings over and over again, strengthening muscles and heart. Fierce predatory eyes gaze beyond the confines of the nest, planning routes, not just linear as ours are, but with depth and height combined, The ambivalent forces of anticipation, fear, desire for the unknown pulls them into higher and higher jumps, talons clutching at safety of their stick home and wings beating as a release from it. Then as the breeze lifts Gale (V0) lets go. This is what 55 days of growth was leading to – flight.

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