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Inviting Wind [Apr. 2nd, 2004|06:20 am]
Wind persists. This would probably be a good day for kite flying, if there were a place nearby free of trees. I think that the best day of kite flying I ever had was when I was about eight years old. An old walnut grove a half mile from our house had been removed and the land graded in preparation for development. It was ten acres or so, fairly level and on a rise which gave the wind a clear shot. There were power lines a hundred yards to the northwest, but the wind came from southwest, so they were not a problem.

I had a yellow kite, purchased at our neighborhood grocery store and assembled by myself. It may have been the first kite I had assembled without help, but I'm not sure. It launched with ease, and rose rapidly. I remember how the strain on the string became more powerful as the kite grew smaller, and how sudden gusts would almost pull me off balance. The small yellow dot reached the full extent of a roll of string, and my older brother tied on a second roll as I held the thrumming line. A few dozen yards into the second roll, the string snapped and the kite was carried away, swooping and diving like a great yellow bird, until it vanished into a gully some distance away.

It came to earth on some land where horses were pastured, and the land was watched by the owners who lived in a decaying old house at the edge of the property, and were known to be rather crotchety, so we made no attempt to retrieve the kite. I was not disappointed by the loss, though. I was delighted that my flimsy construction of sticks and paper and string had made such an impressive journey. As many times as I flew kites after that, I don't remember any experience with them that I found so exciting as that one. But if there were an open field near here, I'd like to try to better it.