Friday, 14 October 2016

Mystical experiences at 37,000 ft

I don't like night flights; you might as well be on a tube train two hours from the next station. On night flights I choose an aisle seat. And early morning flights I spend at least half of the time asleep. But flying at noon, with a seat next to the sun - that's the way to fly! Once the plane is above the clouds, and the sun's heat warms the rims of my RayBan aviator shades, and the sublime beauty of being up there puts me in touch with the Eternal.

Today's flight from Warsaw to London Luton was perfect in this regard. Below: somewhere over Germany, a business jet shoots over the top of my WizzAir Airbus A321, which passes under its contrail. Click to enlarge to see the photos in their full glory.

Below: approaching the North Sea from Holland; wispy clouds at stratospheric altitude, then a thin layer at around 20,000 ft, casting a shadow over low-lying clouds

Below: approaching Luton, sandwiched between the low cloud and the high cloud, the sun just about to hide behind the latter.

"Cabin crew, prepare for landing!" Luton not as ghastly today as it usually is - if you fly in on that 6am flight, it arrives as one of about six from across Central and Eastern Europe, and around a thousand people suddenly descend on border control in one go. The midday flight arrives around 2pm in Luton, which is decidedly less busy. For some reason, everyone at the border control was smiling - making the whole process much more civilised.

This time last year:
The staggeringly high cost of tax collection in Poland

This time five years ago
One stop beyond

This time six years ago:
Who am I? (Kim ja jestem?)

This time sevenyears ago:
First snow, 2009. Ghastly!

This time eight years ago:
Train links to town improving

This time nine years ago:
A beautiful Sunday, south of Warsaw


John Savery said...

Great photos. We flew back to Warsaw yesterday on the afternoon flight, a rarity for me as I'm usually a late night (to Warsaw) or early morning (from Warsaw) flier. Morning flights in early summer can give fantastic views of the landscape below.

Michael Dembinski said...

@ John Savery

The midday Warsaw-London flight is not only aesthetically more pleasing at this time of year, it's also cheaper!

Yes, the early morning (06:00) flights in summer can be quite breathtaking especially just after take off.