For a bit of a splurge while staying in Hana, I booked half hour flight lessons for my wife and me. I found the experience to be exhilarating and serene at the same time. I travel a lot for work, so it is easy to get jaded about the wonder of flight-- but when the instructor Armen gave me the controls and I felt the craft move in response to my fingertips, the sense of awe returned. If flying commercial airlines is riding a bus, this was more like the thrill and immediacy of riding a motorcycle.
After Armen took back control, we flew over Hana Bay and beautiful Koki beach, and then along the coast and up the foothills of Haleakala. We flew through the edge of a cloud and I could feel the sudden moisture. Gliding back to Hana airport, he cut the engine, and in the silence I could almost comprehend the feeling of hanging from a wing, 3000 feet in the sky. Some day if I have the time and money, I could imagine picking this up as a pastime.
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