It is the day after my flight test, I’ve popped back down to the flight school to say “thank you” to Bob, in person.
He has a half hour gap between students; we may be able to grab a chat. I’m delighted that he is still booked to the brim. He should be, he’s an awesome instructor.
I get down there just as he’s landing and finishing up with a student. Another one of his is hovering around the dispatch desk, stalking the winds in hope of a solo flight.
There are a few people around who have obviously heard the news from yesterday. I accept their congratulations. The other students realise what’s going on and suddenly I become a person of extreme interest to them.
I’m the centre of attention, being quizzed incessantly and am in my element! I try to answer their questions as best as I can but I find myself repeating the same phrases that irritated me when I was oh so desperately seeking advice for my PPL. But the truth is, it wasn’t anything I wasn’t expecting. I knew exactly what I needed to do. I took each manoeuvre in turn, focussing on what I needed to do in the moment and not stressing over what might be coming.
I try to remember the ground portion, something that is causing at least one of them some anxiety, but to be honest I don’t remember it being anything other than a discussion between two pilots. Maybe it’s because I’m more comfortable in these situations than I am in the air, I think I took a little more control of the ground portion than may be normal. I dunno.
I start to reel off what I can remember of the airwork. They want details.
“Slow flight, I asked about flaps. I was given the choice so I opted for full flaps. Power off stall, he specified no flaps. Power on was just a standard stall, no climbing or turning. He gave me the rpm (1600) but didn’t say about flaps, so I didn’t ask. I did it clean config.”
They want more, was he tough to please?
“Not really, unusual attitude was fairly benign. Oh the spiral dive was rough, we red lined! He was fairly nice though really. He oriented me as to where I was after the instrument work. On the diversion he showed me where I was on the chart. A lot easier than the practice. Come to think of it,” I look over at Bob “YOU’RE MEAN!”
His students find this massively funny, Bob just smiles wryly!
But yes, I know, If Bob hadn’t been so “mean” in the first place, I never would have found it so easy.