The sudden feeling of being whisked away into the air is one that many never get used to. In the world of paragliding, this is what fuels such enthusiasm amongst its colorful array of participants. As I sat atop Wood Rat Mt., it dawned on me. I expected to run off a 5000-foot peak and my only support was reinforced nylon, and an ancient harness. Yet as I looked behind me, I saw my dad and 20 other of my “Para-Moms” grinning, for little Sy Murdoch was about to take his first solo flight. Such beaming could only resemble that of my pre-school graduation, Oh how I do miss pre-school. Such simplicity. As I readied myself to take the plunge, I noticed a crow hobble off a log and take flight. Looked easy… So five quick steps, swiftly and suddenly I am flung into the abyss. The ground fell away so rapidly I had already begun to miss it, so many good memories. I soon regained my composure and began to enjoy my ascent; I fell into a state of relaxation, for if I were too fall the consequences would be beyond a broken tailbone. Therefore it was placed into the back of my mind. Soon enough I realized that mother earth was in fact sneaking closer and closer, and I noticed that it was time for me to be reunited with a wonderful thing called the ground. Which reminded me of something. The ground is hard, very hard, and I was going fast, very fast. So I ingeniously decided to apply the brakes, in which caused my wing to surge forward, thus speeding up the process of me hitting the ground, but I wasn’t going forward as fast. Just down. Yet as gravity took control I managed to ease out of my kamikaze dive, and gently plopped onto what I later learned to be a nice, juicy, oh so pungent cow pie. A Perfect Landing.
May 27, 2008