Anemophilia – Go Fly A Kite

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I don’t know what it is that makes me want to go out on a windy day. It’s like the wind sends out an invisible invitation to get out there and feel the wind in my hair. I can’t resist but to spend some time alone—just me and the wind. The crazy thing about wind is the invisible force it has when it’s hitting your face. It has to be one of the most surreal things you can experience if you take the time to think about it. How can something that’s not there, be there?

Sudden gusts of winds can force you off your feet. The sound of it as it steamrolls up the hill towards you is one of the most humbling moments you can experience. The trees bending, the wind playfully running its fingers through your hair, and your clothes pulling on your body in some sort of invisible harmony. So why not drop the phone and experience life in real time on a windy day? Maybe pick up a kite?

According to the Center for Science Education, the wind is moving air and is caused by differences in air pressure within our atmosphere. Air under high pressure moves toward areas of low pressure. The greater the difference in pressure, the faster the air flows.

In laymen’s terms, the wind begins with the sun’s radiation, which is absorbed differently on the earth’s surface. The earth’s surface is heated differently because of cloud cover, mountains, valleys, water…

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As a result of this uneven heating, earth surfaces vary a lot in temperature. Air on surfaces with higher temperatures will rise because it is lighter (less dense). As the air rises, it creates low pressure. Air on surfaces with cooler temperatures sinks. The change in pressures up and down is what causes the wind to move horizontally. Tell me that doesn’t blow you away.

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We decided we would gather up some cool clothes, a few vintage kites from the ‘60s, and four models to put the wind to the test. So we packed up our gear and hiked up to the top of Hughes Mountain to find some wind. We found the wind (lots of wind) and had a great day playing in it. Some of the gusts were so great they actually caused you to lose your balance. It was a windy experience, but one of our little vintage paper kites actually made it through unscathed. That little kite flew all day at Hughes Mountain; then the stylist took it home to her kids where they flew it the rest of the evening. It was one tough paper kite. Not sure what they made the paper out of, but man, it’s tough.

We found our vintage wood and paper Hi-Flyer kites on Ebay. They were unused, unopened original Hi-Flyers that were originally sold for 19 cents in the early ‘60s. We paid 23 dollars each. The Hi-Flier Kite Co. was launched in Decatur, Ill, in the 1920s. It was the nation’s top paper kite-maker by the 1960s. With more than 200 employees making kites, Hi-Flier made kites up until the early ‘80s.

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