The Aircraft was parked at Bhopal for a day, so we decided to go from Bhopal to Khajuraho for a trial of conceptual-flight experience created by VayuOne.
It was fall of October and the sky was not done with raining yet. Weather of Bhopal is as unpredictable as its beauty. But we were assured the layer of clouds will not be a hurdle a few hundred feet above. Temperature in the atmosphere gets drastically different as we sail above.
It was the most premium flight experience so far. I formally experienced the perks & luxury of flying private for the first time. There was no hassle of standing on long airline queues. We were escorted directly to our plane by private handlers who allocated us with our separate boarding passes. Security check was not so stringent, and we reached to our plane in no time.
We were the group of Pilot plus four. And we were all equally excited for this unique experience, although for varied reasons of course. I was thrilled to see the world-famous temple site in its physical existence, as I’d only seen them in pictures.
We had two photography enthusiasts on board, who were more than eager to capture whatever beauty their camera could hold; the young adult couldn’t hide his fascination for the aircraft machinery and how he could fly one himself. He was asking all sort of questions from our friendly pilot, who also taught him some know hows of aircraft flying. The professional photographer among us was occupied most of the time capturing the beauty behind his lenses in the most artistic fashion.
Founder of our company VayuOne, who is also a Private Pilot himself had an entirely different outlook towards this short trip. He was calm and observant most of the time, hearing radio frequencies for whole spree.
Whereas I was busy gazing at clouds, starry eyed. I avoided the headsets to hear the conversations over radio frequencies, which would have disrupted my deep stream of thoughts every now and then. It was such a correct time to turn into meditative state. It was quite poetic, swaying in the middle of nowhere with no land beneath my feet and the mystical clouds over my head. A place where I belonged with nothing and everything at once.
The patterns of clouds were changing magically, and the smokey trails looked extraterrestrial in every way. The landscape was swiftly shifting from down below as greens of earth mingled softly with the greyish-blue elementals of sky. I do not know if it was the floating scenery or the chilly atmosphere that got me hypnotized as I slowly dozed off in a state of enchantment for some 15-20 minutes which was enough for our plane to reach the hills nearing the majestic temples of Khajuraho. I was awakened , so I do not miss the rare view of the green hills resembling the shape of camel humps surrounded by water bodies, fields, and grasslands. After a while we were able to catch a glimpse of Western Group of Temples from the sky, and boys managed to click them too. Temples looked ethereal from the sky as much as they look from the ground, maybe more.
After the ariel-scenery experience I wished I could paint, we landed finally at Khajuraho Airport. Fully structured but oddly calm due to no flight activity in Covid times. Voices of our footsteps and babbles echoed through the hallways of the airport which once saw swarms of foreign tourists gathering in the city.
We booked an overpriced cab from the airport directly to the temple Site. We couldn’t go inside, as we were running short of time. I still felt a strange magnetism around the place without even stepping a foot inside the temple premises. The temple-tops were a remarkable sight from the café beside the venue and pictures were essentially clicked.
We all were feeling a little hungry, so we decided to have a quick lunch by the opulent view of temple site surrounded by soothing greenery of the rustic town.
I felt like not leaving that place. Not yet, I felt. I resented not seeing the Temples after coming this close. Undeniably, there was some unfinished business. One day, I knew I would come here again that happened only next month to that day.
Our return was as smooth as our arrival. While returning I spotted a drop-shaped pond that looked so beautiful from above. On the request of the curious kid, our pilot agreed to give us a weightless experience, which felt like one is falling at an unexplainable speed. For a moment it felt like we will simply slip away from our seats due to this gravity defying encounter. It lasted for a few seconds, but we enjoyed it too. While descending towards Bhopal we saw a huge water body that I was informed was Halaali-Dam. We were surprised to what we saw few moments later. We were lucky enough to spot the exclusive ariel-view of Sanchi-Stupas as well. So, we get to see two World-Heritage sites in a day. All thanks to ariel speed.
As we landed back in Bhopal same evening, my-body clock was not accepting the fact that this all happened so fast. I felt like I was hallucinating. It was by far the most lavish lunch I’ve ever had, where I flew all the way to Khajuraho to have most flavorsome meal by temple side.
*author is an assistant with Jag Aviation and having first hand experience on new ways of aviation in India. The words are expression of true experience felt. any queries may please be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org