Tuesday, 11 February 2014


Bob knows me all too well. I was a having a bit of a moment in the circuit with him. Nothing dangerous, just rusty and quite frankly to be expected after a month of inactivity.  Oddly enough my landings weren’t the worst thing going on and normally you’d expect them to be the first thing to deteriorate. I didn’t even feel the adrenaline rush of “uh-oh here comes the runway, rushing up towards me bloody quickly” which normally means I feel the urge to bailout and overshoot.  That really is weird.

Anyways on the second circuit Bob called for a full stop. He could tell I wasn’t comfortable. On the way back in he jumped on the radio and told ATC that this was going to be an instructor drop off, thus removing the opportunity for me to protest.

Same as we pulled up on the apron, Bob gathers his things and asks me something along the lines of "so are you good to go then?"

I shake my head.

He opens the door and gets out anyway, leaving me with very few options.  

I briefly contemplate shutting down the engine. I don’t

I consider calling ATC on my way to the run up area and asking to come back. I don’t

I think about amending my request from “local east” to “circuits”. I don’t

Once again Bob has forced me to confront my fears and head off in to the wild blue (or slightly grey!) yonder. I’m actually grateful.

Having being forced to get up there, I force myself to do the airwork I need to. I hammer away at those steep turns. Over and over again until I’m happy with them. Forcing myself to keep track of where I was geographically, fighting the disorientation so that I always knew where I was.  It’s coming so much more easily now.

Finally I forced myself to do a forced approach. A proper one. I have no field picked out before I pull back the power.  I trim for 65knots, take stock of my surroundings and even manage to find a key point. As I head towards it, I realise that I’m low so I scoot inside it. I’ll be turning the equivalent of a fairly tight base but this is doable. I make the field easily.

Finally, with a glance at my watch, I reluctantly force myself to bring her back again.


  1. "transform your fears into positive power. dare to dream big dreams. life shrinks and expands in proportion to your dreams. in the end, it's more painful not to live your dreams than to go through the discomfort of achieving them"
    :) a gave quote when i'm feeling afraid

    1. I think that quote sums it up beautifully. Even when I'm considering chickening out, I know I'll hate myself afterwards if I do. Thanks for summing it so poetically!

      It's been a good while since I've been so close to saying "No" though. I hope it is just nerves due to lack of flying.
      We'll see, next flight will be a true solo flight as I (weather permitting) will still be in solo currency for thr flight school.

      Now that really is nerve wracking " here WMAP , take the keys and bring her back in an hour or so!!"

      BTW I have some similar motivational quotes that I use to get me through tough times, but they are far too geeky to share in public!!