I have waited a long long time for this….my first flight . I have been going to Native Place for as long as I can remember and have seen Anand Mama (uncle), Jan Mami (aunty) and Dada (dad) learning to fly and have had a good many laughs at the many many funny landings of Anand Mama. I have climbed Shinde hill and Shelar hill multiple times in the hope to fulfil my flying dreams. I had been after my dada who has been promising me a flight with Ravi Mama for ages and I had almost given up hope till last Saturday when we made it to Kamshet in Jan Mami’s brand new car.
I climbed Shelar hill and was really excited at fulfilling my dreams of becoming a pilot. At take-off, I had to wait quite a bit as winds were cross and I was wondering why all those Pilot Mamas were sitting down and feeling so sad while Kavya and I were having so much fun. My dada says that this is called Parawaiting….well, Parawaiting is fun!!! Kavya and I danced and explored the place with my Mom.
Finally, after a lot of waiting, Ravi Mama called me to get ready. Ravi mama looked serious as he went about checking all the straps while I was excited and a little bit scared, but Ravi Mama made me feel OK and put the helmet and harness on me. Dada was more excited than me and was running around clicking photographs. I was of course having the time of my life since I would finally make the run for my flying dreams to take off.Ravi Mama and I were strapped to the paraglider and Pramod Mama was helping us. Then Ravi Mama lifts the glider and starts to run and before I know it, we are in the air. As we took off, I said “bye Dada” and flew off into the sunset J. It was a small flight but a big dream coming true for me as I looked around the hills and at the sky.
As I came for landing, Anand mama, Kavita mami & Jan mami came running to meet me and they all seemed super excited. I had ofcourse completed my first flight and as a good pilot who had done his first flight, danced around the landing field. I saluted Ravi Mama for the flight and then waited for Dad and Mom to come down the hill. I want to do this again sometime soon. Dada has promised to bring me back here for a few days during my summer holidays.
And no offence to my grandparents, but I would rather go to this Native Place than to Goa or Bangalore.
The only thing I did not understand was when I told my Mom that since I am now a pilot, I will have beer instead of milk. All hell broke loose and dad and Anand mama ran away. These grown-ups have funny ways !
Ghost written by Anand Mama aka Anand Palekar
This weekend Nikhil Bhide, unveiled his brand new glider; the Ozone Geo III in the sun colors of yellow, white and red. Being Nikhil’s first wing and the first Geo III in Kamshet everyone was excited to see it unfurl. The Geo III possesses the same DHV 1 safety class as the Ozone Mojo 3, but is about 2 kilos lighter thus making it an ideal travel glider without compromising safety. This suited Nikhil perfectly.
Saturday pilots and guests gathered together on the roof as usual to mingle enjoy the starry canopy above. We also joined in the wedding anniversary celebration of guests Mehul & Nikita. It was their 1st anniversary and Nikita wanted to do something different and a weekend of paragliding and stay at Native Place is what she chose. A novel way to celebrate we must agree! They thoroughly enjoyed the experience of flying, soaking in the relaxing vibe on the hillside as well as the camaraderie and setting at Native Place
We also welcomed pilot couple Chetan and Vrinda who visited after more than 3 months. Vrinda made up by whipping up some delicious gajar halwa (desert) on Sunday afternoon after which we took off to the Shelar site for some Sunday sunset flying. Conditions were great and I clocked my longest flight yet at 2 hours 10 minutes! We returned sated our smiles reflecting fulfilling flights
As the monsoon season draws to an end we have been watching the wind keenly waiting for it to turn east and kick off the new season.
Last week we have had a little east wind in the morning – a small window of opportunity enough for a quick flight if one is ready to brave the mucky path on the way to takeoff.
The FlyNirvana team got to Tower Hill on Saturday in full force. It was a glorious sunny day and we were there on a mission along with National Geographic Channel to make the dreams of Mr. Shantilal Sanghvi an 81 year old gentleman come true.
Mr Sanghvi had always wanted to fly like a bird. National Geographic and Nirvana Adventures joined hands to help him fulfill his dream of free flight. The mission was accomplished much to the excitement of this extremely fit octogenarian. He had a marvelous time paragliding as did all of us. The show is entitled ‘Zindagi Mein Ek Baar’, is anchored by VJ Purab Kohli and will air sometime next month. We will announce it on the ‘Nirvana Adventures Paragliding Facebook group’
Another new season is about to unfold people. Get your wings & your boots out of the closet and step into the sunshine.
Peace Bliss & Happy Landings
Our Swedish visiting pilot group arrived on Thursday night to be greeted by rain on the drive up to Kamshet from Mumbai airport. Friday morning however was a sunny one and Peder told me that Kamshet skies were hospitable to them. Many new pilots in the group had their first top landings, first time above the ridge etc and they were happy but having been our regular visitor over the years Peder was expecting more.
We can call Saturday the official opening of the flying at Tower Hill for the season. It was an amazing day. Flyable from 8.30 in the morning up to sunset. The Tower dished out her usual magic and through the day there were varying conditions to suit any pilot choice. Pilots flew all day long, top landing for refreshments or a break and taking to the air once more. Tandem paragliding passengers had great flights – see picture above of Payal who treated herself to a birthday flight. Me thinks the Swedes did the trick and brought good weather with them and drove away the last vestiges of Cyclone Jal. A truly glorious flying day it was that left me humming the words ‘ what a feeling‘.
Sunday started with mild winds and nice lift but quickly turned to extremely strong winds that went unabated until the evening. But by 5 am the conditions got better and all the patient pilots enjoyed the restitution and flying until sunset.
Peace Bliss & Happy Landings