Another Day, Another Blog

May 2, 2007

Swimming through summer skies

Filed under: curiosities, the joy of life — iamza @ 7:00 am

As a kid, I dreamed of flying. Not like Supergirl, punching through white fluffy clouds in a cape and shiny red boots. I never could get that high — at most, I was only ever a metre off the ground.

Flying wasn’t easy; I had to run down the block till I was going fast enough to dive into the sky. Velocity was important — dive when you were going too slow, and one learned again that being at the bottom of a gravity well was not conducive to a soft landing.

Then, once up in the air, you had to keep up the momentum. For me, this meant doing front crawl, so that I was swimming through the sundrenched sky, looking down as the ground whipped by under me.

I loved to fly. I’d run down the street, starting just after the white walls of Jimmy’s cafe, and racing past Helen’s house, with its terracotta-coloured walls that enclosed a green tropical jungle. Past the overgrown honeysuckle hedge of the neighbours I was convinced must be French because they drove a tiny purple Renault; and the curving white walls of the house belonging to my teacher, Mrs Peters. Down the hill, past the pines, and the huge brick wall that surrounded the prison estate in which my schoolgirl crush, Michael, lived, and onwards, to the wooden fence outside Lyle’s house. And then, just before I hit the huge wooden gate at the bottom of the street, I’d leap and dive, and find myself skimming the earth’s surface, laughing as gravity lost the battle to keep my feet on the ground.   

When I was in my teens, we moved away from that neighbourhood. Funnily, I stopped dreaming of flying shortly thereafter.


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