I love the land.
I love my motorbike rolling on street!
The hard, reassuring street!
And my trustworthy Royal Enfield 😉
And darn I hate flights!
Fear is the correct word.
A metal tube sustained by two wings on both sides 35 thousand feet above the ground with NOTHING! ABSOLUTELY NOTHING beneath it!
Honestly, I marvel at the scientific progress us humanity have made.
But nonetheless, I cannot simply suppress my humane instincts.
As the engines howl, with screeching scream, the gigantic metal arrow hastens its speeds…
Fast, faster, more faster, it’s that ever unending take-off run on the runway as I am pushed back into my seat due to insane acceleration!
What if runway comes to an end even before takeoff!
And suddenly, the wings as I see them, shiver ever so slightly up and down as if soft and feathery.
What? Soft and feathery? And these are the wings that will sustain my life 35,000 feet above!
And without notice, the ground is pushed downwards or is it us, lifted upwards?
Damn! Every single time this is repeat of horrible sensation that runs and burns through my nerves!
The lungs suddenly expel oxygen and the stomach shrinks ever so deep with the blood leaving the brain partially and coming down the neck.
Heck! Altitude is gained and its gaining fast!
What were those big concrete blocks, bold and edifice suddenly became miniscule and toys!
The roads reduced to ribbons and the far away windmills seem just akin to match-sticks.
Towns and cities vanish as we zoom out of this “worldscape”.
And yeah, I can see the mountains.
But they are no longer majestic but mere mounds.
I feel myself taller than those mountains.
I nervously try to gaze upwards, my eyes shiver as I see myself falling faster and faster into the clouds above!
It really seems a dark, ominous ocean!
Kaboosh! Suddenly a roaring thunder ripped the sky, shooting towards the ground.
I could feel my hands. They are cold and watery and shaky…
And next, I feel a sudden need of air.
I forgot to breathe in all this internal panic.
Then my entire vision vanished.
Pitch black and dense!
Fog and mist!
The engines groaned (please don’t stop) more loudly as if unable to accept the thick atmosphere.
Turbulence greets us.
The entire plane shakes violently as if the wings and seats will fall right off into a hapless fall!
Shaky and shakier it’s getting and my heart has already skipped so many beats…
The next instant the flight turns suddenly.
The air hostesses in the aisle lost balance as they fell over to one side.
Sure, this was death!
I was about to die…
But whoa! We had pierced that malevolent sea of clouds as we hovered at heaven!
The clouds were the ground and the sky above clear!
I had never seen above sky so clear.
This sky could have put sapphire to shame!
Blue was it over the faraway edge of horizon and deeper shade of cyan on the top.
And my my, what was below me!
Clouds, waves and waves of thick clouds, pearly in the clear sun shine!
For a moment I felt better and safe.
As if, I was on a ship, sailing over waves!
But these were no waves, but rather deception.
Deception that was 35,000 feet fall!
The journey went on for some more time, with occasional hiccups of turbulence.
And then, the cabin announcement declared that descent has begun to the destination.
The joy of being at ground once again was something I really looked forward to.
But descent is a different story altogether.
This time, we again plummeted into the abyss of thick clouds.
And voila, what greeted us was a torrent of rain.
Angry thick droplets, showering and pouncing on the wings as if in determination to break it in half!
As if vexed as to why the clouds were breached!
But what is below?
It was now clouds below and clouds above!
And in between was a sandwiched, tilted horizon!
As if we were attacked by thick black angry clouds.
The plane heaved, from once side to other, as if searching its own balance in the turmoil.
Why don’t they provide parachutes instead of inflatable float-over-water jackets?
Time came to again sink into another layer of cloud and what followed was long 3 to 4 minutes of haze!
Haze of uncertainty.
I know radar and stuff and pilots really are not blind just because visibility is gone.
But who will make my heart understand that!
While I was trying to reason with myself, at once, in an instant it felt the plane had fallen several hundred feet.
The fluid in my stomach and the air in my lungs almost came to my throat as I was about to spew it all!
Damn, I will never be able to reason!
Then the curtains cleared and I saw land, my dear land in visibility.
The engines started to switch their roars and sang a different tune as the landscaped inched closer.
The wings’ edges twisted as per aerodynamics to pull us further closer to land.
What was small, miniscule and non-existent over the land started coming to visibility more and more…
First the mountains becoming giants, making me realize how small I am!
The flimsy ribbons grew to concrete roads, the moving swarms of dots on those ribbons grew to thick traffic.
Tiny Lego blocks became once again grand, stocky multistoried buildings.
Now it felt I was riding in a fast paced bus.
The ground was much nearer and we were almost at level of terrain when the airplane started its touchdown process.
Again that familiar loud, threatening howl of wind, as if scratching the glass panes outside, about to peel it off!
It felt an eternity as to when the plane wheels will touch the run-way!
And bam it did! With ample of bumps, jerking and vibrations, as if an earthquake had begun.
Touching ground, the airplane still kept moving so fast, as if it wants to fly off again!
Damn airplane, slow down, runway will come to an end!
And reassuringly, it did slow.
The screeching and howls of winds were gone.
I was on ground.
I was safe.
First thing I did was switch on my cell phone and whatsapp home: I am OK.
Whoof! Flight is over.