Posted by: Andrew Skelton | 29/05/2011

Flight of the Concorde

We used to live under the flight path of Concorde, when it was flying, and for ten years whenever possible at 10am -ish and 7pm -ish we’d all rush outside to gaze in awe at the sublime plane roar overhead. When I say roar, I do mean roar, if you were concerned about noise pollution then this was one plane you could easily take a stance against, that is until you saw it fly.

Similarly anyone who has watched any of the Kite family of raptors effortless riding the thermals, will have been equally mesmerised by these graceful creatures. Watching one bird drifting across the land is magical but does not compare to watching a whole sky full of these large raptors. There really aren’t enough superlatives to amply describe watching such a spectacle.

Back to Concorde, I was lucky enough to take a trip on a scheduled flight to New York on board the plane, and it ranks up there as an incredible experience. Whilst the plane did travel at twice the speed of sounds, it’s velocity was not apparent. What was amazing was being so high in the sky, you could see the true curvature of the earth, as well as being able to witness night and day at the same time.

This leads nicely to another trip, and incredible experience, that I’ve already hinted at. My Dad and I will be flying to Kenya at the end of June with the sole purpose of taking a gazillion photos whilst on safari. The major concern I’ve had is how to take my 600mm lens on as hand luggage; this problem has been resolved and now I’m itching to get out there.

Between now and then I do need to get my act together with regards to an exhibition of my work. The central piece is the canvas of the white rose I mentioned yesterday, but I then have to also choose 9 animals/birds another 8 plants/flowers and then 4 photos that will appeal to children. I’m equally excited about this opportunity as I am about the trip to Africa, and I have high hopes that these will snowball into something bigger.

As you may know, Concorde is no longer in service, which is a great shame, however Red Kites are breeding successfully and will soon be a common site in every county of the UK, so whilst we may have lost one aerial spectacle, we still have incomparable site of a kite on the wing.


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