Saturday, February 05, 2011

Insights in Flight

Due to the last minute nature of my booking, I ended up taking a very round-about flight to Kansas for my cousin’s wedding. The flight took me from Austin, to El Paso, to Albuquerque, to Denver, and finally to Wichita. The unexpected benefit of the flight was he view up the Rocky Mountains as the sun rose from the east, creating bright peaks and shadowed valleys in places. The views were so spectacular that, given the chance, I will book this same flight again.


As we were flying over New Mexico and I looked at the vast landscapes unaltered by human hands, I imagined the cowboys in the 1800’s riding across these landscapes and the Indians who populated the lands even before then. Certainly they had to be impressed by the majesty around them, but was it even possible for them to grasp the magnitude of the landscape by standing at eye level or even elevated on the back of a horse.


Streaking trough the sky at 33,000 feet, the sensation of what it had to be like to trek across those mountains and plains in solitude or even in small bands overcame me with a sense of the smallness of humankind. I could barely comprehend the grandeur of it all seen from the miles-high perspective, and yet hardy individuals struck out across it unaware of anything that was farther than the horizon.


After the weekend is over, I want to search out parks with hiking trails in the region over which I flew, so that I can get that eye-level perspective of old.

All the photos were taken through the window of the plane with my iPhone.
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