Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Go For a Ride in the Fly Fly

Our faithful steed
Talk about self service. These days they even make you fly the damn plane unless you're willing to pay for a pilot. Well at least they have air conditioning. They don't? I have to open the what? The window, are you crazy???

Well as it turns out you could pay for a pilot, or you could take an awesome gift from Mrs. Bloggerman and go out on a "Discovery Flight". That's fancy pants talk for a 30-45 min intro flight where the instructor tries to convince you to start taking pilots lessons ($135/hr for in flight training....and you need about 30 hours of in flight time....).  But since I have a lot of time on my hands these days I figured why not.

I headed up to the airport (conveniently located 5 min from the headquarters of NobodyLikesAJerk) this morning and met my instructor, Tom. We headed out to the tarmac and looked over our steed for the morning. We were in a Cessna Skyhawk which from what I understand is avionics for "piece of crap".

Tom walked me around the plane once and showed me all the flaps, ailerons, and propeller. We filed our flight plan and were on our way. Now I thought that FAA regulations and basic common sense would only allow me to take the controls once we were safely in the air. Evidently, that wasn't the case. Tom taxied us out to the main runway and then told me to take the yolk (fancy word for steering wheel) and to go ahead and get our speed up and take off.

WOW!  What a rush. I only had 180 horsepower going for me so I can only imagine what kind of rush it is for a commercial airline pilot who's handling a 747 (120,000 HP).

We were up there for about 30 min and did some basic climbs and dips. Then Tom decided we should get a little fancy and try a steep turn. Think of it like this. the basic turns are like taking your car and turning left into a parking lot. A steep turn is like trying to make that same left turn at 70 Mph when you just realized you missed the address. Another way is like Fast and Furious on crack.

After a little more fun up in the air it was time to land. Tom gave me the choice of doing it myself or letting him do it. Not sure if my life insurance was fully paid up I let him have the controls and here are the results. 

After this very cool adventure it makes me realize two things. Dave Attell is still very funny, and that I don't need a pilot's license. I'm going to go high class here and let somebody do the work for me! Hello Delta?

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