Saturday, January 21, 2012

A Little Sin Trip

I went to Vegas yesterday. It's always a fun place to visit...for free. We took six people in back, plus me. I sat in the back! You see, it was Terry's last day, and he was training his replacement in my normal seat up front. I came along to "help the transition go smoothly," which meant I simply acted as a flight attendant for the flight up and back to Vegas.

Since Runway 8/26 is being resurfaced at Phoenix, the traffic has been really backed up. It can sometimes take five hours to get a clearance into Sky Harbor, so they landed at Deer Valley on Thursday night after a quick trip to California. Thus, bright and early (just was so early that nothing was bright) yesterday morning, Terry and I drove to Deer Valley airport on the northwest side of town. Considering my usual drive to work takes about twenty minutes, we made really good time in just over forty to a much farther airport. I had never been here before, so I was glad to have Terry there to help me know how to find the Atlantic Aviation where My Baby had been parked for the night.

David met us there, and six passengers arrived over the next hour. We were wheels-up at 7:00 AM and lost an hour during the 45-minute flight. Sitting in back sure feels weird! Up front is way more fun! 

I ran out of jokes in the first ten minutes...

After a mostly smooth flight, we landed at 7:00 AM local and got the passengers on their way. I pulled up their rental car and started the heater since it was a little brisk that early in the morning! Then the three of us pilots had a light breakfast at the little cafe in the airport before Terry took a four-hour nap. I had the airplane fueled, paid the bill, and caught up on some emails. Around noon, it was time to take Terry out to his last lunch! He decided on a buffet, so we went to the MGM Grand Casino to fill him up.

Those casinos are tricky places to navigate, which I'm sure is done on purpose. We wandered the entire place before finally discovering the location of the Grand Buffet. The food was delicious, but the chips and fresh guacamole were definitely my favorite part. I didn't even look at the dessert bar, if you can believe it.

Since we were expecting the passengers back by 2:00 PM, I called my sister to inform her that I would be home in time to babysit for her that evening. Unfortunately, the clock kept ticking and no passengers arrived. I had to call her back to say I wouldn't be home in time. I hate promising something that I can't keep! Silly me for trying to schedule something later that night!

They finally showed up just after 4:00 PM, and we were on our way back to Deer Valley. With the time change, we landed just after 6:00 PM. I got the six passengers back inside and to their cars before returning to the airplane to give trash and old newspapers to the line guys for disposal. Amazingly, we were able to get a clearance into Sky Harbor! So Terry and David took off since my car was at Deer Valley. I can't even begin to describe how weird and lonely it felt to see that airplane taxiing away without me inside! That has never happened before!

Thanks to awful rush-hour traffic, it took forever to drive home. Hubby had done the dishes, and I had been up since 4:00 AM. It was just nice to enjoy an evening with my sweetie pie. It had been a nice day at work, though lots of changes are taking place. David is a good guy, and he has Beechjet Type Training class starting in about two weeks. I don't know what the schedule is going to be over the next month or so. It's part of the not-knowing that I hate!  

Patience is a virtue. At least, that's what the little voices in my head keep saying.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

By The Seat of My Pants

The past few weeks have been stressful and not very much fun. I haven't been sleeping well as a result and have been worrying constantly about what the future has in store for me.

But when life hands you lemons...go flying!

We picked the airplane up today from maintenance. This same flight was attempted last Friday (to return My Baby to Sky Harbor after maintenance was finished), only to have something else break on our preflight after our maintenance test flight. Does this airplane just have a crush on one of the mechanics...and I don't know about it?

Today, we got to try it again. Luckily, everything worked properly. And we stayed in the pattern at Willy Gateway to practice some landings...just for fun! I didn't get pictures of that since I was busy flying a simulated engine-out landing in a Beechjet. You can do fun things like that with no passengers on board!

Change is in the air, and I can hardly wait for this stress to be over. In the meantime, flying today felt great. 

When isn't flying the perfect anecdote for every little problem?!
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