We came in high from the west, the sun directly behind us, the clock's hands at the same position as when we had departed. Our shadow played across the landscape. The water of the lake below was still. Some parts were more still, making a patterns like complicated kanji. White hulls were bright in the low sunlight. Some wakes were like razor cuts, straight and clean. Some wakes were paired, the second curling back and forth across the first. The water skiers themselves were too small to see.
As we crossed the shore there was a line of white pelicans, spaced with eerie precision, each riding the vortex of the one ahead. Their wings did not move. The radio was silent.
The light shone bright off the closed hangar doors. It was the light of Provençe, shining hard and straight and horizontal. It seemed to pass right through things at the same time as it highlighted them. It outlined every pebble. Tire tracks in the gravel glowed with an extra dimension. The edge of the pavement appeared ragged as we passed overhead, and the paint on the runway had texture. Our shadow grew larger to our right, its blackness making the grass by the runway a limpid emerald green.
That is why we fly.