A True Story

flying

Have you ever told somebody something and have them flat out not believe you? Isn’t it one of the most aggravating feelings in the world?

I remembered something the other day, and because it was such a cool and amazing thing, I had to interrupt the conversation I was having before I forgot about it.

I could tell right away the people I was talking to thought either:

a) I was joking
b) I was making it up
c) I’d been dreaming
or
d) I was crazy

It’s pretty bloody aggravating that, at age 47, I’m still failing to take the good advice of 17 year old Holden Caulfield, who said

“Don’t ever tell anybody anything.”

He’s completely right.

Because the worst part was, as I watched them not believing me, I started struggling to believe it myself.

Except I know it happened.

But even so my feelings changed from,

“I really did.”
to
“I’m sure I did.”
to
“Did I?”
to
“I can’t, can I?”

Hmm. Crushing disappointment.

I was now doubting the most exciting thing that had happened to me in…oh…decades…or possibly ever (pretty much).

And yet when I’d remembered it and told them, I’d been absolutely sure it had happened — I could still feel the sensation inside me.

You’re probably not going to believe me either, but I’ll give you the benefit of the doubt.

I can fly.

And because it really happened to me, I don’t even feel it’s such an amazing sentence to come out with — although on another level I recognise it sounds incredible. But, you see, it happened.

Yes. I can fly. Or rather, I flew. (I don’t know if I’ll be able to do it again.)

It started with a slight bobbing motion. I was just in the kitchen at home having a clean up. I felt a little lightheaded, a tad floaty — like when you’ve taken migraine tablets and drank Red Bull at the same time. And then I was floating a little. Just a foot or two off the ground. And then right up to the ceiling. I noticed that the tops of the cupboards were thick with dust (well, who has time to dust the tops of cupboards?) I was pretty surprised, as you can imagine. And yet at the same time I had a feeling of inevitability about the whole thing. Like…of course…why have I never done this before?

So I tried a couple of small experimental swoops.

Wow.

And then I had a good fly around the kitchen, right up to the skylight.

Fantastic.

So then I decided to open the skylight and have a float outside. (The kitchen was feeling somewhat constricting.)

It was surprisingly cold outside and I dropped down a few feet so that I was just hovering over my back garden. I certainly didn’t want the neighbours to come out and spoil my fun.

Killjoys.

I got some excellent swooping movements in and the whole thing felt great, and as natural as walking — just more fun. Why had I waited so long?

After a while I decided I’d swoop along to the end of the street — to hell with the neighbours — and then I flew around over the woods that border our housing estate. It was wonderful — fresh air whooshing past me, trees below me — I thoroughly enjoyed myself. I was worried at first in case anyone saw me, but I don’t think they did — people tend to keep their eyes fixed on the ground or just on what’s in front of them, in my experience.

It was fantastic fun, but after almost an hour I was pretty exhausted, so I turned and headed for home. I let myself back in through the skylight and landed in the kitchen safely. When I checked in the mirror, my hair was like a bird’s nest and my cheeks had a healthy glow. I’d been meaning to take up some exercise for years, and I reckoned this could be it — I certainly looked young and invigorated.

I was tired out though, so I decided to hell with the rest of the housework, I’d go lie down and have a nap to recover.

And I guess I just forgot about it. When I woke up, I had no memory of it.

That is, until just the other day, when I was sitting with my adult sons, and it came back to me in a rush, and I had to tell them.

But now, because they don’t believe me — and let’s face it, who can blame them? — I’m even beginning to doubt it myself.

Oh Holden, I should have listened to you.

 

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