Five Years Ago
Five Years Ago
“So, you are going to do it cold turkey?” asked Linda
“Yes, how hard can it be? I am going to be in the pattern…” responded I.
The last time I did a night flight (solo or otherwise) was 4 years and 10 months ago! While night flying can be fun, it is not a favorite time for me. Although with a good instructor or co-pilot, I love to get the experience to do some night flying!
It was a picture perfect fall day: warm, clear (for now) and busy. Earlier in the afternoon, Linda and I had headed out to the practice area, so I could practice my commercial maneuvers while she played safety pilot. It was a busy Sunday afternoon. After some steep turns, chandelles, lazy eights and steep spirals, we had returned comfortably back to the airport.
An hour later, after the sun set and evening twilight was about to set, I hopped back in the aircraft for some pattern work to execute some night landings and edge my night solo time closer to that required for a commercial rating.
It was a partly cloudy, and the waning crescent moon was not visible. I had deliberately departed prior to the official start of night time, so I could adapt easily to the night conditions. I looped around the pattern and decided to execute a touch and go for round one, as I adapted to night flying. Unfortunately calm winds meant runway 34R was in use, which meant right pattern!
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Last days of Fall
November 29, 1882 Aviation pioneer Henri Fabre was born in the French city of Marseille. Fabre’s advanced knowledge of science early on in life helped foster his powerful interest in human flight. With unmatched intensity, he studied and developed designs for planes and propellers. The result of Fabre’s efforts was his creation of the first […]
Eula “Pearl” Carter Scott made aviation history in1929 when she took off in a plane for a solo flight. Pearl, who was only 13 at the time, became the youngest pilot in the United States. She had been born in the city of Marlow in Oklahoma in 1915. Her mother was an enrolled member of […]
November is NaNoWriMo
“Is Amelia, here?” I asked Anne at the front desk. “She asked me to meet her here.”
“You must be John,” she said, as she continued looking at her screen.
“Wait,” she said.
“I beg your pardon?”
“Amelia is not here. She is off in the field inspecting the avionics in one of the B737s, somewhere out there,” she vaguely pointed.
“Do you know when she will be back?” I asked.
“Maybe, maybe not” she responded absentmindedly.
“Do you like opera,” she asked after eons.
“What?” I asked in exasperation. What the devil is wrong with this woman?
“Are you seeing anyone?” she continued.
Before I could respond, the phone rang, and she was on the phone for a good ten minutes, talking secretive, absurd nothings. I was almost ready to give up and leave. What a strange group of people, I thought. How does Amelia manage to work with this weird bunch?
“How about Yanni?” asked the ridiculous woman interrupting my thoughts.
“What?” I asked stupidly. What does this have to do with Amelia I wondered?
“Can you let Amelia know, I was here? I will be at the Firehouse Grill,” I responded getting ready to walk out and leave this bizarre office.
I could hear strange sounds, as someone in the cubicle next to the front desk desperately controlled himself or herself.
“You must definitely like John Lennon. You seem the type,” continued the ridiculous woman.
“Yes, I like John Lennon.” I humored the woman.
This time, the person behind the cube, could not hold himself or herself any longer. I could hear unconstrained laughter. I walked around to see what the ruckus was, before Jane at the front desk could stop me.
Frank the assistant was doubled over laughing so uncontrollably that I was not sure what it was all about. Seeing me looking at him dumbfounded, Frank finally got his act together.
“Hi!” he said. “Amelia said you would come over at 11:30. Would you like to see how we prepare to return an aircraft to service?” he asked. “Amelia said you might,” before I could respond.
“Sure.” I said.
“Terrific, I am to bring you over so you can watch. It is pretty cool”.
As we walked over to the B737 undergoing checks, Frank made small talk. “Don’t mind Jane. She means well. She is just trying to figure out if your interests are similar to Amelia. You know she is a master matchmaker. She can’t stop herself.”
What? I thought. Yanni, Lennon, maybe Jane was not so stupid after all. I could forgive her if she was on my side. Was she?
“There, you are,” said Amelia. “We have been waiting for you. I thought you might like to see the process to return the aircraft to service. This is one of the first aircraft that has been scheduled to return to service.”
“Yes. I certainly would.” I said as Frank and I joined Amelia and Jack as they walked through the avionics checks.
It takes a full seven days to return an aircraft to service according to Amelia.
Although, what was foremost on my mind was whether I liked Yanni.
I’m comfortable with you and me – I’m not so sure about them. They’re not from here, their clothes are strange, They’re easy to condemn. They speak some other language too – I don’t know why they’re here! And, what is worse, they’ve brought their kids! Oh God, I need a beer! Let’s […]