Detailed explanation of “Two Stories About Flying”, including definitions of difficult words. In addition, the explanation is followed by a lesson summary. Also, NCERT Question and Answers are also provided to help students understand this Chapter and do well in their exams.
His First Flight – Introduction
This imaginary story conveys the message that one learns by taking courage and not by sitting idle. A young seagull is fed lovingly by his parents. But when the time comes for him to fly, he feels himself afraid. At last, his mother hits upon a plan by persuading him with food in her beak and the seagull finally learns how to fly. The story highlights the importance of family and friends in one’s life. It gives the message that one needs to believe in self to overcome all the hurdles of own life.
His First Flight – Summary
The young seagull was alone on his ledge. His two brothers and his sister had already learnt to fly. When he wanted to fly, he could not do so. He was afraid of fly because of the long stretch and depth of the sea. When his brothers and sister flew, he failed to gather the courage to fly. He thought that his wings will not support him. He was really very sad. His father and mother came to him. They tried to persuade him to fly. They even scolded him. They threatened him that if he did not fly, he would die of hunger there. But seagull could not move. Twenty four hours passed and no body came near him. All day long, the young seagull watched his parents teaching his brothers and sisters flying. His parents had been perfecting his brothers and sister how to dive for fish. They called him to fly. But he could not. They were also teaching them how to skim the waves and how to dive for catching the fish. He had seen his elder brother catch the first herring. When he ate it, his parents praised him. The sun was rising. It was getting very hot. He felt the heat. He had not eaten for long. He had found a dried piece of a fish tail. But it was not enough. There was not even a single piece of food anywhere for him. He had gone forward and backward on the ledge. But he couldn’t fly. He wanted to reach his parents. There was a deep sea below. The ridge was high.The seagull closed his eyes standing on one leg. He had the other leg hidden under his wing. He pretended to sleep. He thought that his parents didn’t take notice of him. However, mother was looking at him. She was standing high on the plateau with a fish. He saw her tearing at a piece of fish at her feet. As the young seagull saw the food , he felt more hungry. He gave out a sound to get it. His mother replied in a sound and looked at him. Realising his madness for the food , his mother tried to tempt him with pieces of fish. She tore the fish in the manner the young seagull loved to eat. She flew across to him with it. He leaned out tapping the rock with his feet. His mother flew across trying to get nearer to him. The seagull had the food within the reach of his beak. But he could not get at it.
The seagull waited a moment in surprise. He wondered why his mother did not come nearer. He was so mad with hunger that he dived at the fish. He fell outwards with a scream and downwards into space. His mother had swooped upwards. As he passed beneath her, he heard the swish of her wings. Then a great fear caught him. His heart stood still. He could hear nothing. But it only lasted for a moment. The next moment, he felt his wings spread outwards. He felt the wind rushing against his breast feathers. It rushed under his stomach, and against his wings. He was not falling headlong now. He was soaring slowly downwards and upwards. He was no longer afraid. The seagull gave out a joyous scream. He soared higher calling ‘ga, ga, ga’. His mother gave out gaw col-ah’. Then his father flew over him screaming. Then he saw his brothers and sister flying around him.
They were roaring and diving. Then he completely forgot that he had not always been able to fly. He commended himself to dive and soar. He was near the sea now, flying straight over it. He saw a vast green sea beneath him. His parents and his brothers and sister had landed on the green surface of water ahead of him. They were calling him to do the same thing. He dropped his leg to stand on the green sea. But his legs sank into it. He cried with fear. He tried to rise again flapping his wings. But he was tired and weak with hunger. He could not rise. His feet sank into the green sea. His belly touched it but he sank no further. He was floating on it. Around him was his family, crying and praising him. It was offering him scraps of dog-fish. He had made his first flight.
Black Aeroplane – Introduction
This is a mysterious story. The writer was flying his Dakota aeroplane. Suddenly, he was caught in a big cloud and his compass, radio and other instruments failed. There was not much fuel in his plane. Suddenly he saw a black aeroplane near him. The pilot in that plane guided him. As a result he was able to land safely. But he was greatly surprised when the woman at the control centre told him that there had been no other plane except the writer’s Dakota on the sky that night.
Black Aeroplane – Summary
The author says that he was flying his old Dakota aeroplane over France back to England at 1:30 at night. The sky was clear and the moon was coming up in the east behind him. Stars were shining in the clear sky above him. He was dreaming of his holiday. He was looking forward to being with his family.
He decided to call Paris control to get instructed about the way. He then radioed to it. He told them that he was on his way to England. Paris control duly acknowledged. They advised him to turn twelve degrees west. He duly turned to that direction. Everything was going well. Paris was about 150 kilometres behind him. Then he saw the storm clouds in front of him. They looked like black mountains in front of him. He knew he could not fly up and over them. He also did not have enough fuel to go around the clouds.
He decided to go back to Paris. But he also wanted to get home. So, he took the risk and flew into the storm. He could see nothing outside his aeroplane. Everything was black. The old aeroplane jumped and twisted in the air. He looked at the compass but his compass stopped working. He tried to contact Paris control for directions but his radio had also stopped working. He was lost in the storm. Then in the black clouds, he saw another aeroplane. It had no lights on its wings. He could see it flying next to him in the storm. He was glad to see another person. He was signaling to follow him. The author thought he was trying to help him. So, he followed him. He flew for half an hour. He had fuel to last for five or ten minutes. He began to feel frightened. Then he started to go down. But suddenly he saw two straight lines of lights ahead of him on the ground.
Suddenly he was on the runway. He was able to land safely which gave him a sign of relief. He looked for his friend in the black aeroplane. He wanted to thank him. But the sky was empty. He went into the control tower. He asked a woman where he was. She looked at him strangely and then she laughed. She told that there was no other aeroplane except that of his. The author was wonderstruck. He wondered who had helped him to arrive there. He was without a compass or a radio and without any more fuel in his tanks, who was the pilot on the strange black aeroplane, flying in the storm without lights.
|ledge||a narrow horizontal shelf||cowardice||lack of courage|
|brink||edge||blazing||shining with great heat|
|flap||to move wings up and down||dozing||sleeping lightly|
|muster up||gather||preening||smoothing feathers with
|desperate||a great need or desire||maddened||made mad|
|shrilly||sharply||whet||to increase interest in it|
|starve||die of hunger||plaintively||sorrowfully|
|skim||moving lightly over an area
|leaned out||bent his body outward|
|dive||quick and sudden downward movement||tapping||beating lightly|
|herring||a kind of fish||halted||stopped|
|devour||eat at a great speed||monstrous||very fearful|
|cackle||a sharp sound||seized||caught|
|taunting||a remark made to make
someone angry or upset
|soaring||flying upwards||banking||flying with one wing higher
than the other
|dizzy||feeling of being lightheaded, woozy, or unbalanced||Commended||praised|
|curveting||moving with an action resembling
a horse’s leap
|cawed||to utter a cry|