One of my favorite aviation sayings is "you start with a bag full of luck and an empty bag of experience. The trick is to fill the bag of experience before you empty the bag of luck."
Early on in my flight training I wrote that one of the most difficult aspects of the endeavour is summoning the strength to humbly, and realistically, self- assess your own performance.
One year ago today, my wife and I made the drive down to Hayward for the first time to take an introductory flight/bay tour with California Airways. My scheduled instructor for the flight was busy, and so another instructor picked up the flight.
It's 6am on a dark Tuesday morning. I sip the bland coffee I bought from the donut place, wince at the taste, and get back to my flight log. Having just called to get a weather briefing, I rotate the whiz wheel every which way, computing my wind correction angles, estimated ground speeds and fuel burns.
Note: I half-finished this blog post, I'm posting it as such. I ended up becoming so busy I didn't write for over a week, and now I can barely remember what I ended up doing, other than getting beat up by the wind.
Cell phone, wallet, laptop, helmet, keys; check. My pre-commute checklist that I run through before leaving the house in the morning. I unlocked my bike, bid farewell to the dog in the backyard and pedalled towards the train station.
I'm killing time in the California Airways office, re-re-re-reviewing my charts, going over the visual checkpoints I can expect to see today. After yesterday's successful solo cross-country to Modesto, I had arranged to fly a longer solo cross-country today. This time around, Hayward to Santa Rosa, on to Sacramento Executive then returning home to Hayward.
"Check out the photos on the camera" I told my wife as we pulled out of the California Airways parking lot.
My alarm starts screaming. I stand up out of bed, walk to the dresser to turn it off. I've never woken up well with alarms, placing my phone across the room forces me out of bed, greatly increasing the probability that I'll wake up. It's miserable. My eyes sting from tiredness.
I've fallen a bit behind on my flight-related writing recently. Believe it or not, blogging tends to fall lower on the priority list than things like sleeping or eating.