This week’s Photo Challenge from The Daily Post is “From Above”. The moderators suggest taking photos looking straight down to as a way to change perspective for common sights, objects or situations. Rather than look at something familiar from a different angle, in considering my entry I recalled an occasion in which I had to get above in order to actually see the view in its entirety. In May 2011 (almost exactly 2 years ago), I had the great fortune to travel to Kathmandu for a friend’s wedding. The week that I spent there is truly beyond description, but on one of the few mornings without a scheduled event, our small group of American friends took the opportunity to get above the city and into the mountains.Our evental goal was Mount Everest, but along the way we would be taken past 14 of the highest peaks of the Nepalese Himilayas. Here are just a few of the photos I took that day, glued against my tiny, fogged up porthole in the 19-seat Buddha Air flight.One of the most stunning vistas were those seen when the clouds parted just enough to see the mountains rise all the way from the surface. Usually a river or lush valley ran between green, rugged peaks that rose, continuously, through the sparse clouds and emerged in the blue sky, jagged and snow-capped. One by one, we were all invited to unbuckle our seat belts and join the pilots in the cockpit of our small plane. The view afforded through their windshield was stunning, clear and almost panoramic in scope. My timing was impeccable. As I stepped in between the two pilots, craning my neck forward, Everest came into clear view (that’s it there, the tallest peak on the left). At first, I was somewhat surprised – it didn’t seem so impressive, surrounded by its mountainous brothers and sisters. We flew closer, could see vague outlines at base camp and then it struck me, how far above the Earth and how far away from my everyday reality we were. I felt so small, but my mind and perceptions were open incredibly wide. The whole world was laid out below me, the view was heart-achingly beautiful and none of this could have ever been seen any other way than flying above.