Monday, March 15, 2010

Almost There!--March 14, 2010


Woke up in a befuddled state sometime this morning.  Went back to bed.  I was so tired.  Ended up waking up at 9:48 A.M.  Just in time to go get some breakfast.  But I was still way tired.  Not sure what happened there.  I later figured out that I had lost an hour of sleep due to the clocks springing forward.  Yup, had NO idea about that when I went to bed.  So much for knowin' when you don't watch TV or anything!  ha!

We took the day pretty slow.  We had rain and low clouds again, so we were really in no rush.  Well, until about 1:30 in the afternoon when I got a phone call.  My boss wanted me out of here TONIGHT!!!  yikes!  I hadn't even flown with the new guy yet!

I quickly rounded him up and headed for the airport.  I received a phone call that said that I would now be flying out tomorrow instead of today (it was way too expensive today), but I still wanted to get this training out of the way.  We basically had what we had a couple of weeks ago...a pilot coming in from a larger airplane and going back into the 172.  The first guy was coming out of 250 hours in a regional jet.  This guy was coming off of 350 hours in a King Air 200.  So I knew that we would have some issues...nothin' bad.  But that's just how it goes.

I helped pre-flight, then hopped in and helped him figured out the "ancient" radioes.  He actually has a pretty good stack, but he didn't care for it!  ha!  My goal was to do some take-offs and landings...then do some IFR work.  So we headed out to 26L and got closed traffic for 26R.  He was pretty good on the flying part, although I was a little leery climbing out at 65 knots.  The Cessna will certainly do it, but I sure wanted that nose down.  I told him there was just no reason to climb out so aggressively on a long runway!  We weren't configured as we crossed the numbers, but again, it wasn't too bad.  He was just a bit behind the airplane.  He wanted to dump flaps a bit too early, but he never did.  His hand went down to do it, but he saw he was outside of the white arc.  It was kind of funny/interesting to watch him have to "hand fly" an airplane again.  He's admittedly just so used to automation.

We came in for our first landing, and it wasn't too bad.  We had a nice 12-knot cross-wind out of the north, and he didn't put too much control in, but I was more than happy to show him that he needs to get it over, especially after we landed.  We did a touch-and-go and did it all again.  The second one was better, the third one fine.  He's still a bit behind the airplane with everything going on (missed a couple of radio calls and didn't take the north winds into consideration on his base to final), but I was also being a stickler.  He IS learning how to fly a 172 all over again!!!

After our third landing, we headed out and did the full ILS to 26L with the procedure turn.  Again, it was pretty interesting to watch him "hand-fly."  He's just not used to it!!!  And again, he was a bit behind with much of the approach, but after we talked about it, it made sense.  We went down and landed to a full-stop and discussed the whole thing.  I could tell he wasn't too confident, so I said, "Let's do it again."

We took off again and did the ILS approach again.  We actually were sent south-bound at 1300 feet (right below the clouds), and I had to frantically search for the VFR chart to check for towers.  Agh!  That all happened real quick.  NOT cool!  But we were fine.  We actually went ahead and requested a local IFR and climbed up into the soup at 2100 feet.  We weren't in much, but the runway disappeared, so that was good.

He flew the ILS approach sooooooo much better this time.  It was night and day to his first one.  You could tell he felt better about it, too, so that was good.

We landed and called it a day.  We had flown 1.6 hours.  I'm not too worried about him actually flying the's just getting the day-in day-out comfort of mastering the 172.

We all went out to eat tonight at Applebee's.  And I also learned tonight that I will in fact be heading for Florida tomorrow to begin training.  My flight leaves at 4:30 from here in St. Louis.  I ran around most of the night taking phone calls, getting paperwork collected and printed off, and getting everything ready for the transition tomorrow.

If all goes well, I'll fly with the new guy tomorrow morning, then come back and quickly pack, and then head for the airport where I'll be on my way to Florida.  I knew this day would be coming, but it's hard to believe it's here!!!  I am "movin' on up!"  I'm pretty excited.

The logistics are kind of crazy, though.  I'm crazy tired, and I'm eager to sleep.  I know tomorrow is just goin' to fly by...and yet be long all at the same time.  So much to do tomorrow morning.  Clean out my airplane, pack, get papers signed, fly/train, come back, leave.  Agh!

Went to bed very tired at 12:35 A.M.

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