XC Flying with Jocky Sanderson at Kamshet, India

XC Flying with Jocky Sanderson at Kamshet, India

Flying High at Tower Hill

On the last day of the workshop the general task of the day was to gain height and head out over the back in the general direction of Lonavala and Mumbai.  Pilots took off by 2.30 and were buzzing about trying to get up and out. Chris White was up there and waiting to fly out with anyone who got high enough. He later headed out with Abhijit.

Back on the hill the skies were full of rainbow colored gliders buzzing about at different elevations and distances moving out and back to the ridge when the wind cycles slowed down.

Rinul gets ready to takeoff - Ravi watches the wind

Dwane, Dylan, Hiren and Sandip, Rinul all gained height at some point or the other. Rinul got up and hung around by the tower working it  and waiting.   Jocky Sanderson took off later that afternoon. Those who were interested were told to land at 4.30 for a lecture in Psychology and then it would be time to go our own ways.  Jocky took off and headed back over the hill with the pilots who were high enough and ready to go.  Rinul and Foram another young female pilot headed out with him. They flew 6 km back over the hill in a down wind glide. Just 6 km you may say but we were super excited to see Rinul and Foram head out . Way to go girls I said to myself as I kept turning in sink to get yet another view of the crescent shaped wings fading out as they glided further away from us.

Fly Rinul Fly

I met Foram later when we gathered  at the Rangoli Restaurant for the last lecture and to say our goodbyes. “You should have been there with us Astrid” she said. At that instant I came to the realisation that although I had been hesitant to leave the hill,  as I saw them head out i knew in my heart that was definitely where i wanted to be – heading out on a glide with friends.

The course ended with a lecture on Psychology and Flying and like the very first lecture it aimed many kicks at my butt waking me up to the many possibilities of stepping out of my comfort zone away from my unique self crafted issues to overcome my fears and demons and fly high and far.

We said our goodbyes and headed out to Native Place for one last night of being together. Happy excited pilots and friends sharing special experiences. That night we thank Nirvana Instructors Ravi and Sandip once again for putting us first and foregoing chances to head out and away. You guys are amazing.

Peace Bliss & Happy Landings

Astrid Rao

Author: Astrid Rao

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