Monday, May 14, 2007

Sun, sea, babes and turbo's

Well, our $100 burger plans changed a bit. Matt was jaded from flying and Janis' friend wasn't moving from her hotel until 2pm, which would have put paid to any plans of going anywhere for lunch. So instead we had a really pleasant late lunch (English style with a proper bacon and eggs fry-up) and then met Kevin at Montgomery airport to check me out in the 182.

Janis dropped John, Matt and I off at the airport and Kevin walked me through the plane. It was a beauty. A 2005 Cessna 182 with a Garmin 1000 glass cockpit and a turbo engine. John and Janis also lent Matt and I their Bose noise cancelling headsets to try them out. With John and Matt in the back seat, Kevin and I in the front, just like the old days, we ran through the checklists and fired up the engine.

We taxied out to the run-up area, but during the run-up I was no longer able to hear Kevin on my headset. We swapped headsets and it soon became apparent that there was something wrong
with the intercom system my side. A quick faff about with swapping headsets (I eventually connected mine into Matt's side in the back) and we were ready to head off.

We took off so quickly, the plane leapt into the air and we were climbing easily at 100 feet per
minute, something that the C172 struggles to do. We climbed to 3,500 feet and the Garmin system was beeping to let me know we had a thousand feet to go. Kevin had me fly to Alpine and do some air work, so steep turns and stuff to get used to the feel of the plane. It really is a heavier plane to fly than the C172. The first steep turn had Kevin correct me and remind me that I was no longer flying an aerobatic plane, but I soon got the feel for the plane again, but I was having a wee bit of trouble nailing the altitude, climbing, then descending to correct etc. But when I rolled wings level I wasn't too far from the altitude I started at. So not too bad.

After the airwork, we headed off to Brown airport, near the Mexican border. We did some touch and go's, Kevin doing the first landing, and I did the rest. The first landing was a greaser, the second was with a few wee hops, but still soft, and then we headed back to Montgomery via the San Diego VFR corrider (which takes you right over the city and San Diego airport). We then brought the plane down slowly and made an approach to Montgomery field. The last landing I was a little fast, flared a little high after having to sideslip the plane in and then ended up getting a little slow. Kevin was quick on the controls in case I botched the landing but we came down eventually. I was a really embarrased by that though, thinking to myself I should have known better. But the guys were very magnanimous and said they thought I did well. (Thanks guys for your kindness, but I know it sucked).

We tucked the plane away for the day and then Kevin signed me off on my logbook to endorse my logbook to say I can now fly turbo aircraft. Cool....thank you SO MUCH Kevin.

The rest of the afternoon was spent by the beach in Mission Bay. Kevin, Matt, John, Janis, Janis'
friend Annette and I spent the day in the sun drinking beers, talking about planes and everything else and Matt, Kevin and I were enjoying the view on the beach. :-) A wonderful finish to a great day.

Oh, I almost forgot. I am now officially in Karma receivership. We went to the supermarket to get some food for dinner tonight, and John and I spotted one of those electric carts that disabled people use to move around the store. John went to sit in it, but then decided not to. But I sat in it and saw it was working, so I scooted around the supermarket in it. The guys were pissing themselves laughing, and of course everyone in the supermarket was ever so nice and moving out of my way, But I think I'm now going to hell :-)

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