Fly-by Fly-day – Wild Weekly Photo Challenge: Flying

You’ll never be able to soar on eagles’ wings

Without the willingness to first take a great leap of faith.

Few people can deny the delight that accompanies the notion of being able to fly. Even those who might not wish to take on great heights in the daylight hours have likely experienced dreams of doing so, at least a time or two. I couldn’t resist addressing the matter (first literally to later use figuratively) in my novel, At the Water’s Edge. Here’s an excerpt from there on flying:

“Do you think there’s any experience more freeing than to be able to spread your wings and soar through the air?” she pondered.

“Mayhaps we should ask that pair up there,” Wey answered in delighted amusement.

Flying out in front of them were two falcons performing impressive acrobatic feats, as though these three humans had purchased costly seats to an extraordinary aeronautics show. The falcons were soaring and diving in close proximity and in synchronicity with one another. With this, Danielle witnessed one of the most astonishing sites she’d ever before seen.

The smaller of the two birds broke away from its mate and began to rapidly ascend. Just as suddenly, it turned, tucked its wings, and began a high velocity dive towards the ground. Danielle gasped and scrambled to the edge of the ridge, checking on the bird’s well-being as it neared the ground at such breakneck speed. She didn’t notice Wil and Wey drop the remnants of their lunches to scuttle after her; nor did she understand that their swift movements had nothing to do with concern over the bird’s well-being, but her own. Danielle let out her breath as the falcon skimmed the ground, only slightly readjusting his position, while snatching his prey up in his mouth. She had to turn her head for the slightest second to avoid watching the dirty deed of the falcon using its beak to take its prey out of its misery. She did turn back in time to see him readjust the prey to his talons.

Had that last feat not been so impressive, she would never have believed the one that came thereafter. The falcon rejoined his slightly larger mate (which Wil explained would be the female) and resumed the acrobatics, now with prey in hand (er, talons).

“Danielle, you’ll not want to miss this next part,” instructed Wil. “Watch closely.”

While diving and spiraling through the air, the talons of the male and female brushed together, with the meal being exchanged between the two in mid-flight.

“Did you see that?” squealed Danielle breathlessly. “It…she…was upside down! And they….that was incredible!”

“Bloody grand, was it not?” laughed Wey.

As if trying to cue his audience for a standing ovation, the male falcon swooped in their direction, slowed the flapping of his wings, then flew over to a tall tree behind them to land.

This bird definitely knows how to fly first class.

As evidenced by my photos, I’ve demonstrated some ways in which I and others have tried to experience that same free & fancied feeling. And it won’t be long ’til Santa & his reindeer will be out and about, making their magical annual flight.

What about you? What’s your favorite way to experience flight?

I’m participating in the online adventure travel magazine LetsBeWild.com’s Wild Weekly Photo Challenge for bloggers. This week’s Challenge is: Flying!

To vote for photos or to enter your own, follow the link above.

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