Sunday, March 13, 2011

Go Fly a Kite!

It's a kite flying kind of day, the wind is perfect and spring is in the air. When we were kids we would be collecting our money (and/or selling pop bottles) to get the money to buy a kite and spend the day flying our kites. In our younger days we would run our hearts out and most of the time still not be able to get the kite to fly.

As we got older we learned to wait for the wind. We would take turns holding each other's kites in the air to maximize our chances of catching the breeze and the rush of excitement we felt when the kite finally took off was matched only by the dejection we would feel when it invariably got caught in a tree within the first minute.

Every now and then one of us would get lucky and the kite would be up all day. Sometimes we would share the kite but usually we couldn't take the chance on another kid screwing up our flight. When things were going really good we would share our kite string so that the soaring kite could go even higher.

One time Rusty got a kite up on 10 rolls of string. It was the highest we ever got a kite. It was so high that it looked like a spot in the sky. As he flew the kite we were scrambling for every scrap of string we could find and collecting money to run to Star Market to buy some more. It was the greatest day ever! Finally it got so dark that we had to pull the kite down because we couldn't see it anymore. We never did repeat that sucess.

When I went to Ohio State, I decided to try my hand at kite flying one blustery, spring day. I learned that sometimes the wind can be too strong to fly a kite. I walked into the field beside our dormatory. I held up the kite and it immediately took off. It took off so fast that the kite string sliced the palm of my hand like a knife! I quickly wrapped the string around my jacket sleeve. It promptly sliced off the sleeve and cut my arm as well.

I let that kite go.

I can remember when I was really little and we lived in Tennessee. We were in the backyard having a picnic. My dad was flying a kite and he let me have it. I let it go. I can remember him running and chasing the kite and cussing the whole way trying to get it. It flew away.

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