Thursday, March 11, 2010

The $100 Hamburger--March 11, 2010

Woke up at 7:29 A.M.  My roommate told me we had clouds in our flight plans, so we both headed back to bed.  I was pretty happy about that.  I was eager for more sleep!  I slept until 8:45.  Grabbed some breakfast, then took the day slow.  We had clouds poppin' up all over outside.

I took care of a washer/dryer saga back home.  I think it's finally over with.  Glad to put that one behind me.

Around noon, we all headed over to the airport to do our scouting flight.  We had already picked out an airport to go to that had a restaurant on the field.  It was only 15 miles away.  The winds were pretty brisk today, around 15 gusting to 20.  But I was pleased to find out that the ride was fairly smooth at altitude.  I only climbed to 2500 feet, though, to stay below the Class B shelf.

I was the first to take off, and so naturally I would be the first to land at the new airport...on a 2200-foot runway that we were all salivating over.  Well, I flew the left downwind, then made a pretty short base/final turn (it was all in one!).  I lined up with Runway 27, but I was high.  I dove for the runway, but I was now fast.  I floated and floated and floated and ate up half the runway.  Crap.  I knew what I had to do.  I knew the guys were watching me, too, from the downwind!!!

"Oh, Andy."  I heard it on the radio, no lie!!!

Well, I pushed in full throttle and did the go-around.  I simply would not stop in time by the time I got down on the pavement.  That runway was getting real short real quick!  It was a bit embarassing...frankly I wasn't that embarassed, but, of course, all of the other guys knew I had messed up.  But as I was climbing out, I was kind of proud of myself.  Sure enough, I HAD failed the approach.  I was too high, too fast, and I put myself in a bad position for landing on a short runway.  But I recognized that, and I didn't let anything get to my head.  I initiated the go-around no problems.  Of course, I was nearly on the pavement by the time I did it as I was trying to get down to save face, but I still did it, nonetheless.

I came back around and landed no problems at all.  I still had 1500 feet of runway remaining!

We ate at the little was nice enough.  Simple.  It was called "Fly Girls" and had the nose-art girls all around the inside of the diner.  I'm not goin' to lie, I really like those!!!  Some of them are just downright attractive!!!  ha!

After a long lunch, we walked over to the hangars where we had seen some old warbirds.  It turns out it was a museum of the Commemorative Air Force.  It was pretty sweet.  An old man took us on a tour (a $2 one!) and proudly showed off the planes and memorabilia.  It was pretty neat.  The highlights were a B-25 bomber and a HUGE TBM bomber.  I'm just madly impressed with the size of fighter airplanes.  It boggles my mind.  We gawked for over an hour.

We flew back, and the rest of the day was pretty uneventful.  I ate the free food, talked with the cute desk chick again, and read more of Hughes' biography before I went to bed.  The forecast for tomorrow is rain.  We're all lookin' forward to a day off.  Well, it will probably be another day like today.

And I'm not goin' to lie, today was pretty sweet.  I flew an airplane to go out to eat.  Who does that?!

Went to bed at a healthy 11:30 P.M.

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