Hi there and welcome to my little bit of virtual real estate!
I started this blog to document my progress through the paragliding world, one of the most cleanest and freest forms of flying. In part I was motivated by an excellent blog by another beginner, who is lucky enough to fly in Cyprus.
I have been fortunate enough to have been flying for all of my adult life, starting out on sailplanes while in the Royal Air Force before moving onto powered aircraft and now paragliding. I certainly don’t get all bothered about what type of aircraft I am flying, for me the joy is being in the air and each aircraft type brings its own rewards and challenges.
Currently I live in Belgium, not the ideal place for paragliding although I am hoping to move closer to mountains within the next couple of years. So stay a while read up on my exploits and feel free to give me feedback.
The blog title by the way comes from the excellent poem by John Gillespie Magee, Jr. an American pilot flying in WWII. The poem has become a mantra for pilots worldwide, and I reproduce it here, it communicates better than anything else I have read the joy that pilots find when in the air.
Oh! I have slipped the surly bonds of Earth
And danced the skies on laughter-silvered wings;
Sunward I’ve climbed, and joined the tumbling mirth
of sun-split clouds, — and done a hundred things
You have not dreamed of—wheeled and soared and swung
High in the sunlit silence. Hov’ring there,
I’ve chased the shouting wind along, and flung
My eager craft through footless halls of air….
Up, up the long, delirious, burning blue
I’ve topped the wind-swept heights with easy grace
Where never lark nor even eagle flew—
And, while with silent lifting mind I’ve trod
The high untrespassed sanctity of space,
Put out my hand, and touched the face of God.