APPI paragliding course: The Beginning


I remember, the beautiful part about joining school after a long summer vacation is that nervousness of my friends not going to recognise me, will the peon uncle smile at me giving me an assurance of familiarity or NOT. This and other fear can make any young heart go dub-lub-dub, it is the same feeling I get when I go back to my paragliding alma mater at Temple-pilots, the place where I picked up this beautiful sport!

That fear couldn’t even last for 3 min as when I entered I met long lost people from novice piloting days and a friendly banter ensued followed by the friendliest of faces of the instructors here and the cutest SPIKEY or as Neenad (@mumbai__streetphotogrpaher)
calls, “SPIKEYAAAAA” to which there could be a flying sandal on the way by the ever caring Anita, co-owner or should I say Co-nurturer of this beautiful setup!

It would be unfair to the entire flying fraternity if I don’t mention the uber suave and someone who can rival Dhoni in the coolness quotient, presenting

*drum roll* Avi Malik *drum roll*

With the initial chitchat between the instructors and old story narration, we settle down with a cup of chai for the de-brief session headed by Sr Instructor and chief prankster Ankush, he takes on the session like a boss, rampages through earlier day’s mistake learnings as they like to call it here.He introduces me to the bunch of pilots who are going to be there with me for another 9 days of the course and these are actual pilots, they fly aircrafts and then I ask myself what are they doing here and then I chuckle at the thought of “what am I doing here?” we are seeking something “beyond the usual.”

Anyways, we hit the simulator practice and I ace it, I am killing it when instructor Vikas the shelar boy makes me feel like shite when he points out my straps are not plugged in, embarrassingly I fix it and he gives me the nicest smile of “it’s okay” if it exists. Ankush pulls a prank on P1 students with me in the play and it falls flat with the students(thank god for that)Post the simulator practice, I sat down for the most amazing “home cooked Indian food” I have had in a very long time, simple food with so much love does become delicious anyways that’s what my mom does when she cooks for us! 🙂 With a quick nap, we rush to pick up our glider bag ensuring I have my helmet in place, I double check and ask Akash(Instructor) to check for me again! 😀

We dump ourselves into this hot tin traveller, start moving to this lakeside spot for which I have been waiting for since I have seen pictures of it plastered all over the base.

After a quick stop at the very famous eatery with the paragliders of Kamshet, and a refreshing sugarcane juice we head to our site.

SITE: Words are not going to be enough to present the beauty
Showcasing Exhibits below :B
Exhibit1: Can you feel the wind? 

Do you see how much it gives.

After an hour taking in this beauty, we decided to get the ground handling activity going as I was coming back after 3 months of a gap, the most painful and rewarding aspect of paragliding is getting to know your glider a lot, Kiting and ground handling session gives you the opportunity to do the same. 

Ground handling heaven.

After a 90 min of gruelling ground handling session and looking at spikey taking a cool dip, Instructors decided I was good enough to do a top-bottom here at Pawna,

Reaching the top, the view was mesmerizing, a fairy tale set up. Absolute scenic or as the film buff in me pointed out, this could be a YashRaj movie location.

That jutting massiveness is Tungi fort.

The top to bottom was absolutely mesmerising, with green-blue-orange hue all over the place and AVI sir playing with my alertness throughout the flight over the radio.

Refreshed from the top-bottom flight. Your’s truly.

And before we realised, we were ready to pack up and head to the base. 

Just got down buddy! Enjoy the scene! 😀
Spikey keeping a close watch.

Sunsets like these

Lights will guide you home. #cliche

This place is a beauty bomb, waiting to explode with its template, I just hope it never gets discovered more than it has already been!
The final meal of the day makes me smile, thank you chef Kaki at the base. 


That’s all folks. Lights out. 


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