Shorekites like Tidetail do not so much fly, but rather glide. They have little power to flap their wide, kite-like wings and instead cruise over ocean winds like gulls, effortless, sailing for hours in their hunt for fish. But the ocean can be a fierce place and we see many youngsters coming here to learn a little more of how to fight the snarling winter storms.

With no means to hover in place to listen in classes, Tidetail often ends up settling on one of her classmates’ backs or shoulders, but so small as she is, this is never an issue. If the winds catch her and pull her away, she must sometimes be retrieved by an older student or by a teacher. On still days, she cannot fly at all beyond a short skim over the lake.

With a wind under her, however, she can dare some serious tricks and spins, often manoeuvring so sharply that she startles the pupils around her. The tricks seem to motivate her after days of little achievement, so it is always celebrated and encouraged.

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