Joined: 25 May 2010
Joined: 25 May 2010
There was a fair complexioned man sitting behind the desk, with dark hair, in his forties or at least I assumed. He was dealing with one person at a time in the short queue, I looked toward my Dad who went and sat back on the blue corporate type chairs like he was used to this kind of atmosphere. My brother was too busy already trying to find a new interest as he made his way to where the flyer's were kept 'How To Become Captain Of Your Own Yacht' seemed like an intriguing choice to him, as he seemed so engrossed in reading it from this distance.
"Hi, may I take your name" said the fair man in his deep voice breaking my observation of trying to get used to this place. I felt like my throat had been tied up in that moment, which was definitely not what I needed right now! I was dying of embarrassment, speak I shouted to myself, otherwise you'll be sure to make a fool of yourself. I didn't have a chance to look back and see if there was anyone else behind me, but a brisky voice had been coming from someone who seemed like they were behind me, the voice hadn't stopped at my silent stuttering, which meant I was safe from being labelled the fool just yet.
"Yes, I'm sorry, my name is Manvi, Manvi Chaudhary, I believe that..." I was going fine until my voice trailed off like I had a sore throat, carry on Manvi I told myself once I excused myself and cleared the knot in my throat. "Erm, sorry, I believe I have a trial flight with Paul at Two pm" I managed to finish. This small sentence seemed like a victory based on the struggle I had getting through it.
The guy hadn't noticed the nervousness in my voice - thank god, or maybe he did, but wasn't bothered by it, he skimmed through his paper database, and muttering my surname over and over again until he'd pointed it out with his ballpoint pen, and replied "yes I believe you do, if you would like to make way to the bar, which is just outside those front doors and literally across the drive, you can wait there comfortably until Paul arrives and he'll find you himself, okay." He finished with a friendly smile, after putting down his pen which he just used as a pointer to direct me. "And that would be one-hundred and thirty-five pounds for the Cessna one-five-two trial flight please."
"Yeah sure," I said fiddling through my handbag embarrassed yet again, as I almost forgot that I had to pay!
Just in case I had done anything embarrassing I chose not to look back in fear from allowing myself to be recognised by the man behind me. As I turned to leave I could hear the conversation after my exit continue instantly, while I was trying hard not to deliberately eavesdrop, I could still hear the guy who seemed pretty tall, judging solely on his silhouette that was slightly visible from my blind spot, he was moving in behind me and greeted the receptionist in an informal manner, and high-fived him while feeling the need to speak extremely loud.
I instantly grew a biased hatred to this tall unknown guy; I absolutely hated it when people spoke like everyone is listening to them alone, is it really so hard to talk in a pitch low enough just for the people who are in the given conversation, why do they feel the need to let everyone know what they're doing on their so-called Friday nights, I wondered in bother.
"Virat Vadhera" said the receptionist followed by a very loud and obvious sigh, "now what brings you here so early...oh wait let me guess...was it an early night in bed doing revision that kept you?" he chuckled aloud sarcastically.
"Hey Vinod, my man...just chill" said that same cool husky voice that was on the phone bragging like he was front news a short while ago, "I happen to take my lessons very seriously okay, and there's nothing I'd rather do more than fly" he responded with a hint of amusement in his voice while trying to portray himself seriously.
"Of course you would, I'm sure a bottle of Vodka and Red Bull would be equivalent to flying high, right?" replied the reception guy again, but this time joining in with the campaign for sarcasm that was trending between them, "you're up at Three-thirty pm, on Runway five - okay," and then I heard a set of keys being thrown to him "make sure you check the Aircraft it just came out of service..."
The conversation continued, but I couldn't hear the rest as the voices went into a blur for me as I moved away.
I didn't know what to expect just yet, a semi-nervous breakdown already taken place - well of some sort at least, and an irritating encounter seemed to have cropped up unexpectedly, I wondered eagerly what would come next!
To calm my nerves I told myself that I probably wouldn't be sticking around too long anyway, I even managed to convince myself after several attempts. It all depended on the flight test now, which for some unclear reason I found myself dreading right now.
"We're all set to go Dad" I shouted over to him and my brother before heading to the bar, which upon reaching I found to be very appealing I must say. Dad and Dabinder, or rather Dabbu had quickly ordered chilled beers and a Coke for me without asking; holding on to them cautiously both of them made way outdoors where all lessons were taking place for us visitors to see. It was easy enough to filter the crowds and tell who was new there amongst the people that were well acquainted with the place, a bit like that mega tall guy back in the reception area, who I could tell was definitely not new around here, and from what I could guess they clearly shared relationships on a more friendly basis here - well at least that's what it seemed like from where I was stood.
The view was mind blowing while sitting in the garden area, the green grass was freshly cut and spreading its aromatic whiff into the air for us to enjoy. There were flight tests running right before us, for some I could tell were going up in a plane for the first time and others who were so used to it that it seemed like they were running everyday errands. There were so many young people here, and here I was thinking I'd got off to an early start at my age, but clearly not early enough. I laughed at the teen adults that were waving to their friends or family like it was there first day at school or something. Okay so maybe I'm being a bit too judgemental for my first day, but I realised that I just needed to do something to get my nerves through this tough time which were busy fluctuating like pathetic bouncing balls for personal entertainment.
My so-called Instructor finally found me, he was tall, tanned, bald and looked European. He shook my hand and introduced himself as Paul, and I of course responded as Manvi, "Manvi Chaudhary." He briefly shook hands with my Dad and brother, and turned back giving me a nod to follow his lead, when we quickly left.
This was it! I could begin to feel my heart doing wild cart wheels without any kind of precision. Before I knew it I was in front of the Aircraft - well an Aircraft. I couldn't believe it, I tried to remain calm, but it had become way to difficult by then, all the adjectives related to the word 'happiness' or 'excitement' in the Oxford dictionary put together couldn't justify the belated look in my eyes!
Paul begun to guide me around the body of the Cessna One-Five-Two Aircraft, while briefing me with the basics of the Plane. The tyres had to be checked manually, the right and left Ailerons needed to be manoeuvred to their farthest depths they were capable of just to check if the hinges were functioning well, including the tail of the aircraft, and even checking the basic appearance of the Plane, which was better referred to as the fuselage. These were just a few of the things he mentioned, but the important fact he pointed out was that everything had to be checked manually before the Aircraft gained any altitude. Once we were inside the cockpit, which happened to very tight surprisingly, he once again guided me through the instruments on the cockpit which was pretty much everything on the 'dashboard' you could say.
"I know it's a lot to remember, but you'll get used to it," he said as he placed his headset over his ears and told me to do the same. Wow I really felt like I was part of a movie now, it felt great. "Obviously you can't be asked to remember everything, that's why we have a checklist ready in every Aircraft, because there's so much to ensure before you go up" he said, giving a reassuring smile, "we don't expect any individual to memorise every last detail" he threw in casually.
"So I don't have to go mad remembering all that" I confessed with a breath of fresh air.
"No you don't Manvi," he smirked finding my confession amusing, "we call that 'the walk-around check' because that's exactly what we're doing" he smiled.
I seemed to have already liked this guy, he was an easy personality. He put the key into the engine and guided me through with words, and then with a roar the engine came to life. Jesus I was nearly taken off guard there, it was like sitting in a live monster, except that we was controlling it; well he was.
Now I found myself in the exact same position as everybody else that I had been making fun of earlier on. Seeing my Dad and brother sitting there with that proud smile on their faces watching their daughter taking her first real step towards her dream was a feeling that I couldn't even describe to myself. It was truly something I thought as I released a deep exhilarating breath of satisfaction and before I knew it, my hand had gone up and I waved at them just like everyone else. With a big grin like a child that was sitting on their new bike for the first time, I sat waving frantically, even though I felt a little childish I didn't care, I carried on, and they waved back looking exactly the same! That for me became a memory that would remain unforgettable, stamped in my mind forever like it would in a photographic memory. Whether I went ahead with this flying course or not, this moment in my life will always be one of those that would never leave me. Everything about this moment was just perfect - an unusual word for me to use, because nothing is ever perfect for me in usual circumstances, but for once I couldn't have put this word to better use.
The single propeller began turning clockwise on the nose of the Plane, and was gaining huge impact within seconds. It was revved at 700RPM (revs per minute) while standing idle, after a few short minutes Paul pulled the throttle and revved the engine at 1200 RPM to taxi the plane, which was the standard speed to taxi the Plane onto the runway. Yes taxiing the Plane onto the runway, I didn't even know how to drive! Let alone manoeuvring the Aircraft on the ground, not to mention the rudders which were literally like I was paddling my feet like a duck: left, right, left, right, within the same second, it was absolutely amazing at how such little movement was making the hugest difference.
Finally we'd made it off the grass, using only my feet to steer us out onto the concrete runway, and then Paul took control "I have control" he said clear and loud.
"You have control" I replied giving him a single nod, to let him know I had abandoned any form of control of the aircraft, which was very important apparently he explained earlier, as this could lead to major confusion whilst having a Co-Pilot alongside your flight, therefore clear means of communication are absolutely vital.
"Golf, Bravo, Romeo, India, Zulu, Tango, Zulu, on Runway Seven ready for take off - all clear ahead?" Paul spoke through the radio transmitter and sought final confirmation.
"Golf, Bravo, Romeo, India, Zulu, Tango, Zulu ready for take off, on Runway Seven, Paul" Informed the lady's slightly fuzzy voice back to us.
He pulled the throttle out a little more, and the engine was instantly revving faster or in my terms 'roaring with more force', the speed was now 1400RPM, and I, midst all this was getting thrilled to my stomach! Slowly he'd pulled the throttle out with full force and the engine was thundering at 2400RPM, when I noticed that we were beginning to lift from the ground in small intervals, bouncing along the way! And then it happened he let go of the brakes which was literally at the tip of the rudders using only your toes to press down with, in order to keep the Plane from going anywhere.
This time it was Paul who was paddling his feet mega fast, the Plane was jerking from left to right within split seconds, right now controlling was definitely 'key'. I could feel the Plane doing more bounces along the way, ones which had slightly bigger leaps then before, and my stomach hosted butterflies going wild from the new discovery, and that was it the bouncing converted into glided footsteps, slowly I could see the distance growing between us and the ground, then the people sitting in the garden area, next the runway which soon turned into a long black strip that looked like a tainted river in the dim night, grand houses with tennis courts and swimming pools in the back gardens suddenly looked no different to the birds eye view from Google Earth, and finally when I remembered to look up we were almost amongst the clouds, if I put my hand out it would've felt like the heavens were within reach, and the smile I boarded with had imprinted itself somewhere onto my soul, it was a happiness that could never be re-lived.
"This is Paul is here, our aircraft is successfully airborne - over." Once he was done with all the formalities he let me take control of the Plane, which was a lot more comfortable to control up in the air then it had been on the ground, it felt simple for the time-being, and nothing short from feeling like we were almost floating.
"It's like being free" I said as I tried to look through the big soft thick heavenly looking velvet cloud in front of us. I'd always looked at the clouds and tried to make pictures in my head during long drives when I was little, and never had I thought back then in my entire life that I would ever be so close to one - not one but many, it was like 'a walk in the clouds' literally for me, it was so beautiful that using words to describe this phenomenon would be an injustice to the view my eyes had been bestowed with, being able to see the world from a different view was quite magical. Looking up to the skies from the ground has led me to think many things in the past, but today looking down from the very same skies made me believe what a wonderful life we lead, how these little moments in our lives compile a huge archive of wonderful journeys from childhood, how the world suddenly looked like a safe place to be, sitting up here amongst the clouds felt like I was living a dream while being awake, which criticises the statement in itself, but reality screamed to me that dreaming dreams was not impossible, and living them was just like building yourself a new beginning, like a step into a world to discover oneself.
"Trust me, you're anything but free, when you're up here, though I know what you mean, but the thought of being free up here for long is actually frightening" he said breaking through my prolonged thoughts.
"Why do you say such a thing?" I asked curiously.
"Well can you imagine being lost up here," he looked over to me nodding my head in a frantic 'no' once I'd given a quick scan around me.
"Exactly, it's one of the first things we tell everyone, never be mistaken that you're free up here, you must always be alert of your surroundings and other aircrafts, sometimes even birds" he warned with a raised eyebrow. "The word 'free' itself means an excuse for being slack, leaving behind any priorities I would say, and that's not what you're looking for here I'm afraid" he smiled with pity.
So I guess I was wrong about the 'free' part, but secretly at that point in time that is what I had felt like and it wasn't a feeling I wanted to show the exit door to just yet, but he didn't need to know that. It was at that point that I'd decided I was here to stay, that feeling that dominated me earlier of not wanting to go ahead with the lesson had totally burnt out with fuel in the engine - to hell with all that. What had I been thinking back there, that I would just step away from the whole thing because a little nervousness struck me at a bad time - no way!
Two weeks later I was back for that long Summer. I decided to stay at the accommodation on the Airfield itself, I figured it would much more exciting then anywhere else! Apparently the rooms were all booked out, and I was rumoured to have been lucky as I got a room so quickly. But it was only later that I found out that most people that resided in the room that I'd taken had either moved out or left, because the roommates were a handful. The most interesting part was that they were all Indian - okay so I saw many brown slash Asian faces on my first day here, but what were the chances that I being Indian myself will come across the only apartment that had two other Indian people, okay so later I found out it was three. Maybe it was a cultural thing, I mean how could they all specifically be put together? Anyhow that wasn't my concern, my only priority were my lessons here - full stop.
It was okay I shrugged I turned to inform, "I'm happy with it, thanks" I said to the gora guy who was showing me around my new accommodation. "Er, so do I have the apartment to myself for the Summer or something?" I asked curiously finding all the rooms empty and the lounge in pretty much a huge mess.
"No." He chuckled, did he find something funny about me, what was he laughing about? "I'm sure you'll have the privilege to meet them pretty soon, perhaps later on tonight if you're lucky, but the hot girl that lives in that room over there is safe you know, but she's gone home to visit her Parent's for two weeks" he replied back with a smirk plastered over his pinkish face the whole time.
"Wait, you mean that I'm sharing with two guys?!" I asked with surprise, "but no one said anything about my roommates being guys" I disputed.
"Tough choice Madam, this was the only available room for the Summer, and seeing as you wanted to move in so quickly you should consider this a win win situation" with that he left.
Great! I slumped back into the sofa and relaxed a while, well at least this would be a calm chilled out Summer, I thought. Well the odd few flying lessons here and there, and getting my Club Membership sorted out, and my Medical Certificate was also scheduled for the month, but it didn't seem like too much too soon just yet. The Kitchen was sort of filthy, and I'm sure I heard that guy say there was a girl that lived here and she was obviously Indian, which made me wanna be sure she couldn't have been this untidy. Maybe it was the guys, 'cause the gora guy did say the 'hot girl' was away for now. I wondered what the guys were like, they're also Indian, this could be interesting, man I wondered what Dad would have to say about this, I sat laughing to myself.
I so needed a chilled drink, I headed over to the fridge only to find it empty. Man! What kind of people were living here, I mean what did they eat, there wasn't even any food in the house, I cursed them already as I rummaged through all the empty cupboards. The only thing I found that could quench my thirst was two bottles of chilled Foster's beer, it was the only option, and tap water just wouldn't do. Without thinking twice I popped it open with my back teeth and gulped down a whole half in one breath, I flexed my neck muscles to relieve myself from the hard day's strain, first I started unpacking, and then I decided I would soak in a nice hot bubble bath - oh god that sounded so good to me right now, maybe I should go with the bubble bath first. I popped into the bathroom to check it out, and ran back out almost immediately, "Oh yuck, yuck, yuck!" I squealed jumping up and down from one foot to the next. "Nasty!" My beer had almost found it's way back up the same pipe it travelled down a few minutes ago, "okay, just take a deep breath Manvi, take a big long deep breath" I breathed in and out and used my hands like I was helping the energy flow better around me. "First I'll unpack, then clean out the Kitchen and the lounge, and if I survive long enough I'll see if I can work a miracle on the bathroom" I dreaded while planning my day to settle in, 'comfortably'.
"Phew" I finally sat down after taking three black bags of rubbish out from the Kitchen and lounge alone, and then neatened out the small store room which was difficult to do, as the light wasn't working inside, and it kind of gave me the creeps too, so I tried to hum a favourite tune to keep my mind occupied, just so I wouldn't freak out. It did look like the perfect hot-spot a ghost would pick to hideout, I thought worrying whether I could be right about it.
The front door had flung open and a guy...no a tall guy, sort of cute, walked through the door, managing to give me a mini heart attack just as I had the theme of ghosts and ghouls running in my mind already - man this guy picked the perfect moment to freak me out! I let out a pathetic shriek. "Jesus! You scared the hell out of me!"
"I didn't know you had it in you" he said casually as he bit into an apple, and walked over to the couch and put his dirty shoes all over the coffee table I'd just polished.
"You didn't know I had what in me?" I asked back confused as I walked over to him attempting to fling his dirty feet off the table, "and do you mind! I just polished that table" I said trying to peck his feet away with my own foot as I didn't want to touch them with my hands.
"Hell...isn't that what you just said," he replied looking back up at me and yawning, well he looked tired maybe that was the reason for his slack attitude, "...oh and no I don't" he added. I was a little slow to get what he meant, but later realised that he was trying to say he didn't mind ruining my efforts, god I hated him already!
As if this wasn't enough, he went and laid down all over the couch without removing his shoes and was knocked out within minutes.
"Hey! Hey! Wake up! Wake the hell up!" I nudged vigorously, "you can't sleep here, can you at least have the decency to go to your room and sleep" I tried to get through his thick head, "who the hell are you anyway?" I asked whacking the cleaning cloth in my hand over his arm in sheer agitation, his breathing reeked of alcohol so it was hardly like he'll notice anyway, which explained why he was knocked out.
"Virat, Virat Vadhera" He mumbled, as he got more comfortable on the couch. "That's who I am, and hit me with that nasty cloth and watch what I do to you" he managed to threaten in his drunken state!
"Like I care, one down, one to go" I said to myself, "if this one has turned out to be like this, then god help me with the second guy" I feared screwing up my lips in bother. To hell with all the cleaning, I'm gonna go to bed too, why should I waste my time, and besides at least I got through the whole day without using that dirty disgusting bathroom, I'll work on that wreck tomorrow.
Thank you for reading!
I will upload the next chapter tomorrow, hope you enjoy it guys.
Do press like and leave your comments .
Joined: 09 July 2009
Joined: 27 April 2011
Joined: 10 December 2011
Wow!!! I loved it!! Can't wait for the next part!! Also I love your writing style =)
Joined: 13 September 2011
Joined: 29 May 2010
Joined: 25 November 2011
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