I have another 7 pm flight scheduled for tonight. I’m filled with excitement as I pull up to the airport. It’s beautiful out and only a few clouds around. It’s still warm from the heat of the day but cooling and the wind is light.
I stop at the gate, breathe it all in as I look around to see what’s going on and prepare to enter. My instructor hasn’t arrived yet and both trainers are parked in their normal postions. It’s quiet here this evening. As I head to the front of the building, I see a beautiful red and white plane coming in for a landing. I haven’t seen it before, he makes a beautiful landing and I admire the plane as he brings it to the ramp.
I speak to two of the picnic table crew landing judges as I make my way in to grab the keys and confirm the schedule in the office. I am scheduled in Mike Bravo tonight, so I grab the keys and as I come back towards the door, I see that Robert has arrived and is headed my way.
I’m in a great mood tonight, something about knowing that I’m going to be flying just warms me from the inside out. I go out to do my pre-flight inspection and greet Robert. He notices my exceptionally good mood and comments about it. We have fun when we fly together. It’s great to be comfortable and relaxed when you are learning to fly. It can be stressful, but I have found that if I’m relaxed that I can get into a good rhythm. He understands that I’m very focused and that I mean business, but I have fun in the process too.
Everything looks good tonight, no problems with the plane during pre-flight. I have a little problem getting the plane to start. It tried and quit, so I pushed in the throttle another time or two and leave it in a little more than usual. I try it again and as it hestiates, I push the throttle in a little more, it catches and I pull the throttle back out so that it will idle at 1000 rpms. Everything set and I taxi out to the runway, stop and start my run-up checkout. Set the brake and push the throttle in to get the engine up to 1800 rpms now, test the mags, pull the carberator heat to on, rpms drop about 600. I look at Robert and say that doesn’t look good. He looks at it and tells me to do it again. So, I turn it off and the rpms go back to 1800, pull the carberator heat on again and the rpms drop 600 again. He says he doesn’t like the looks of it, to take it back in and park it. So, I pull back around and shut it down. We jump out and open the cowling to inspect the engine. This time we find a hose that is sunk in and appears to be colapsing in on itself. Looks like it’s blocking airflow, he says he’ll make a note for the mechanic and for me to go pre-flight Juliet while he buttons up Mike Bravo for me.
Everything checked out good on Juliet, so I’m ready to take her out and get her in the air. I realized tonight that I fit better in Juliet. I can see over the dash better and get a better runway view. The instruments are in different places so the first go around I have to get acquainted with her again, but together her and I make it dance tonight. It was a beautiful thing. Everything was setting up perfectly as I was coming around for my landings.
The sun was setting over the city towards my left side tonight. There were some clouds in the distance so it wasn’t blinding me this evening. At one point I asked Robert to get my phone out and take a picture of the sky because it was just too amazing not to capture this time. Once he got my phone out, he said he’d take over and fly so I could get the pictures. I’m fortunate enough this time to get a good shot to share for a change. I hope you see the beauty in the view from up here. I wish it did it justice but hopefully you get the idea.
My approach looked and felt really good tonight. I was having a little issue with flaring but as the night went along, it came together like a beautiful symphony. My roundout was all about timing and control. I was hesitating on the roundout occasionally, stopping too soon with it and not getting it pulled back all the way. I think I have the proper feel for it now. What a night! I love to fly an airplane. There isn’t much better than doing just that, it’s incredible and sometimes indescribable. It still takes my breath away and fills me with excitement. I had the best view in town tonight! It really is my favorite time to fly.
Another .9 hours on the logbook for a total of 19.4 hours.