The last few flights have been basically about sending me off to the training area getting further and further away (and getting back in one piece of course).
Last week I got half way to Warragamba Dam and thought that'll do and headed home. It's amazing how the confidence grows with each flight (I suppose when everything goes according to plan). As long "confidence" doesn't lead to complacency, I'll be happy.
This week, after a dual check, both my flights took me to Warragamba and looking for something...It's been mentioned to me by a couple of the guys at my school that a task allocated to students (non syllabus of course) is to find a pool in someone's backyard, out in the training area, that is shaped like Australia. Ok...hints...no way, you've got until your flight test to find it. Oh mama, northern side / southern area / northwest corner?...nup on my own . Two flights down, not sited yet - many flights to go.
I've found that I'm very keen to get there for my flight and go off by myself - thinking that I'll be right, I can leave the instructors alone for a couple of weeks, they can concentrate on others. Alas I'm always brought back to earth with a quick chat about what / where I'm going, was the machine ok when you checked it over (what would you do if that part didn't look right?), ok start it up and I'll jump you off the pad and then you can go. One morning in particular the instructor must have watched me pre-flight and asked me about what I was looking for when I inspected the blades. My reply was standard, to see if they were clean, not bent, no cracks or dents (ie no damage) and we talked about the importance of blade inspection (I don't think he was worried about my inspection) he was more focusing on whether it was first flight, last flight or someone had just swapped machines with you out in the "field" - you just don't take them for granted. I'm glad I was stopped in my tracks and had that discussion, like so many others I've had and will no doubt have in time to come - that imparting of knowledge and experience (no matter how small) all goes into the learning experience and what shapes us students to what I / we ultimately become. Don't get me wrong I believe I'm fairly patient by nature (and I'm learning to be more and more) - I just can't wait to get up there if you know what I mean and get my "fix" .
I was also reminded to challenge myself a bit when I'm up there, you know don't just go through the motions, aim for a power setting, attitude, zero on the VSI and balanced with the pedals. Climb up, correct attitude, handle the secondary effects, descent back down. Not to mention keeping an eye out for a suitable landing area, traffic, listening to the radio and developing an instrument scan. I'm about 31 hours now, so there's still plenty more to do.
Next week I'll be looking for that bloody pool (AIP Australia should print that on the VTC)
Until next time...
Follow choppernut on his journey to CPL(H).
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