Tuesday, April 24, 2012

FarmingTON of Fun


I went to work yesterday.


We simply dropped off some passengers at Farmington, New Mexico’s Four Corners Regional Airport and came home.


Considering that it was 74 degrees in Farmington, I really regretted not staying for the entire week. I’ve heard lovely things about Farmington, after all.


Everyone who knew that I was coming here (hi, Dad!) said to visit Durango a few hours away. Does that mean nothing in Farmington is worth my time? That I should just leave town as soon as I can?


It was hard to climb back into that airplane, knowing that next time I opened that beautiful air door was going to be to triple digits. It’s literally a hot, dry slap in the face.


Really, Mother Nature? You saw fit to completely skip the 80s and 90s this year? Sheesh. I’m already dying.


Luckily, we are getting both the house air conditioning fixed and (hopefully) my car air conditioning fixed this very morning. It’s only going to get worse from here. We need to be prepared. And we also need to not be sweaty.


And I’m writing this late Monday night because I can’t sleep in a house that is stubbornly staying at 87 degrees. Good grief, it’s impossible!


Anyway, enough whining! If I lived somewhere cold, you know that I would whine about scraping ice off my windshield, too.


I would much rather be hot than cold, so please forgive the pertinent ranting and raving of a rather warm person on this fine summer mid-spring evening.


The flight was awesome. We landed less than fifty minutes after taking off out of Scottsdale. The weather was beautiful, and only a few bumps were felt leaving the Valley.


This airplane has a much lower wing-loading than my previous Beechjet, so the bumps are way more obvious. The best thing about the Beechjet was that it felt like flying a much larger airplane…and the bumps felt that way, too. In the Phenom, I notice every little current in the air. It’s the only downside to this new (practically-perfect-in-every-way) airplane, that I’ve found.


We wondered if it was the busiest the airport has been all day. We landed just after a medical King Air touched down (an ambulance pulled up to his airplane just as we were taxiing in). Shortly after us, a Pilatus took off. Then, two helicopters landed on the ramp not too far from Gladys. They are in town filming a Johnny Depp movie, apparently.


Who knew people made motion pictures in Farmington, New Mexico?!


I had called ahead with our credit card so we could pay for the ramp fee. FBOs charge a ramp fee if you don’t buy fuel. We usually need fuel and thus get to bypass paying this silly ramp fee. In this case, it was much cheaper to pay the $130 fee rather than purchase their required 150-gallon minimum at $7.59 a gallon. We get it at home for less than $4, so it made perfect sense to just tanker fuel and make it home without paying an arm and two legs for their gas.


I hate being ripped off for fuel prices. But it isn’t always avoidable.


We let the hefty brakes cool down while we loaded bags into the awaiting car. Then we watched as the helicopters made their noisy arrival. I love helicopters. I think I’m too chicken to fly them, but they are always fascinating to watch.


Then I got our clearance from Ground Control back to Scottsdale while El Capitan did the Before Engine Start checklist. Before long, we were taxiing on our way to Runway 25 and cleared on course after takeoff.


I can sweet-talk shortcuts like no other. I really love talking on the radio. This may come as a surprise to everyone, but it’s true.


Rather than flying our assigned routing all the way up to Flagstaff for the Jacobs Two Arrival, I got Albuquerque Center to give me direct to SWIRL intersection. That is just north of Scottsdale and not out of the way at all! We crossed SWIRL at 11,000 feet and 250 knots, as assigned.


Soon we were touching down back at home.


And it was evening, so the heat wasn’t as bad as I was expecting when that door was opened.


It’s nice to be home for the week to work on so many projects. A return trip to get our passengers will take place on Saturday. Maybe I can stay longer than just ten minutes this time? I think it looks like a beautiful place!


Most places are beautiful from the air, though…

1 comment:

  1. Beautiful pictures, Micah. It must be nice to be home this week. Maybe the drop-off-pickup-later routine will become the norm...?


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