Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Special Flight, Reflections

Mary and I received news Monday that a very good friend of ours Mother had passed. I put a leave slip in to take the day off so that we could attend the services. I met our friend through my job back in September of 1990, we instantly hit it off. Her family lives just a stones throw away from where we live. 17 years....that's a long time and her parents were always very special to me. Good folks, great sense of humor and always ready to welcome you into their home.

Mary and I attended the service at our local church and I can not remember ever seeing so many people lined up for visitation in my life. The church was actually full. I guess I should not have expected any less for a person that had such a giving spirit.

My Bride, the most gentle heart I have ever known was taken back by some of the simple facts we must face. At the young age of 60 a Mother, Grandmother, sister,wife and friend leaves a void in us all. How many years will her daughters not have her around for advice and that special time when it's safe to confide in the one who knows you best. Mary thinks of all this while realizing how lucky she is to have her Mom. We can only be there to support or friends and their family.

After the services Mary and I decided to go fly, it's where we both love to be. A short hop today just to get in the air and have some quiet time looking at world from our favorite perspective while we make heads or tails of all that went on today. Mary was quiet and actually closed her eyes for a good part of the 30 minute flight. I concentrated on the tasks at hand while enjoying the very freedom of flight. A few radio calls to announce our position and look for traffic had us on final following a Caravan doing touch and goes at Millville.

We decided to eat at our favorite place Antino's. A few refreshing ice teas later and with full tummy's we were ready to head back home. Again our flight was quiet, looking for traffic and working our way into Wilmington. We were directed to enter a left downwind for one nine and we acknowledged. We called out traffic, a Rick Hendrick Motorsports Saab 2000 N511RH at our 10 o' clock, No. 1 for landing on a right down wind and shadowed her on the left down wind. Once the Saab turned base to final we followed suit, having already added the second notch of flaps to keep me slowed for spacing. Our glide slope looked good and we figured why not try a short field landing since there was an aircraft (Cessna 172) shooting an ILS approach for runway 1 (they were cleared No. 3 to land). We landed just past the numbers at 60 kts on center and needed to add throttle to make the first right hand turn off at Kilo. Over to ground point seven and cleared to taxi home (Red Eagle).

We had the chance to chat with one of our neighbors that is in a club aircraft (C-172) He was a very nice man and we spent 15-20 minutes chatting about clubs, aircraft, flight time, weather and whatever else crossed our minds.

Finally home and sitting here typing our flight review, I can only think how lucky we are to be able to look at the world from the sky above. Life is short, we should all try and live it to the fullest each day. Yes, I know, we hear this all the time but it's our plan. I know Mary and I always think of tomorrow and saving for a rainy day, but today is the day to let someone know how much you care and how much they mean to you. Mary is talking to her Mom right now, as she does every day. I think I'll go give her a big hug and smooch and remind her again today how much I really do love her.

You will be missed but never forgotten Bernie, by family and friends, blue skies.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Millville Air Show

We could not have asked for a better day to attend the Millville Airshow. Temps around 85* a nice breeze blowing all day and a big tent to provide shade. Mary and I along with John and Kim had VIP passes thanks to the DRBA. The original plan was to fly in and spend the day then high tail it outta there for KILG as soon as the air boss would let us go. After watching the weather and the chance of storms I was on the fence if to fly or drive. I read on the forum yesterday about taxi and hold time around .7 of an hour. Heck that's longer then it takes me to fly there or home (20 minutes each way). The decision was made to drive.

We started early meeting at KILG at 8:15 and heading for the bridge. A nice drive to Millville and easy access to parking. WE walked through the static displays then made our way for the VIP tent to snag good seats. We ended up right out front with a clear view to the blue angles aircraft and about center of the field. I posted the schedule of events and some info on each pilot or demonstration team.

Gates open at 9 am with Program commences at 11:10 am
0900 - Gates Open to Public
1120 - Opening Ceremonies
1140 - Red Eagle Air Sports Teaser
1150 - USAF-ANG KC-135
1200 - Greg Poe MX-2 Teaser
1220 - L-29 Demo
1227 - Warbird Flight B-25s
1240 - Rob Holland Ultimate II Demo
1255 - USAF-ACC B-1B Flyby (2-ship)
1303 - FAA Firetruck Demo
1308 - Tim Weber Geico Extra 300
1323 - L-39 Demo
1337 - P-51 Demo
1347 - USAF F-15C Eagle Demo
1400 - USAF Heritage Flight
1415 - Greg Poe FAGEN MX-2 Demo
1427 - Warbird Flight(P-47,P-51,P-40,F4U)
1440 - Red Eagle Air Sports
1500 - Blue Angels C-130 Demo
1515 - USN Blue Angels
1630 - Airshow Ends

Red Eagle Air Sports - Magic in the Air!
Providing a singular blend of low-level precision formation and solo aerobatics with fascinating transitions, Red Eagle Air Sports is nationally known for it’s eye-popping, spectacular performances

Tim Weber's Geico Extra 300
The aircraft of choice for Tim is the German built Extra 300. The Extra 300 is an unlimited-class composite monoplane stressed to handle even the most demanding maneuvers. With over 300 horsepower and a roll rate in excess of 340 degrees per second, this aggressive mid-wing aircraft provides the performance and looks to make it an instant crowd pleaser.

Rag Wings & Radials
Rag Wings & Radials' B-25J is restored as "Panchito" that served with the 396th Bomb Squadron, 41st Bomb Group, 7th Air Force, stationed in the Central Pacific. Also flying in the group was the Mid Atlantic Airfield Museum (Reading, PA) "Briefing Time" and Tom Duffy's recently acquired B-25.

The North American B-25 was one of the most famous twin engine medium bombers used during World War II. It was produced in greater numbers than any other American twin engine combat aircraft. No doubt part of it's heroic stature derives from its namesake, the outspoken Gen. Billy Mitchell who proved once and for all that bombers could destroy targets, and that wars would nevermore be decided only on land or sea. The B-25 achieved worldwide fame on April 18, 1942 when sixteen B-25's under the command of Lt. Col. James Doolittle were launched from the aircraft carrier HORNET and attacked Tokyo in a daring raid.

Allen H. Smith III L-39C Albatross
Allen is a native of Wynnewood, PA just west of Philadelphia and has been flying since he was 17 years old. After graduation from Lower Merion High School he entered Penn State University at College Park, PA as part of the first Pre-Med class to graduate through the Hershey Medical Center. During his freshman year he literally bumped into the Naval flight recruiters that were on campus and offered to take him for a ride. The hop was in a T-34B, just like the one Allen now owns, and after just 15 minutes of aerobatics, Allen’s life was changed forever. He passed all of his testing and medical exams that same week and sworn into the Navy at the age of 17 as part of the AVROC Flight program. In very quick order Allen changed his major to Aerospace Engineering and started taking flying lesson at the local airport.

Today Allen is a retired Vice President of Engineering for Wyeth-Ayerst Pharmaceuticals in St. David’s PA . Along with his son Chris they live in Glenside PA and own 2 immaculate museum quality aircraft. The first, a NAVY T-34B with a 285 hp engine that had 1650 hours TTSN in 1974 when the FAA zero timed the plane after Allen’s restoration. Most T-34’s have between 7 to 11,000 hours on them. Their second plane is a Soviet L-39C Albatross Jet Fighter that they imported directly from Estonia, Russia in late 1996. Allen and Chris spent 1950 man-hours, and most of 1997 & ‘98 restoring the L-39 to better then new condition with all new US avionics and electrics.

Marine's Dream FG-1D Corsair
Along with Tom's TBM-3E Avenger, the 2007 Wheels & Wings Airshow and Car Show would like to welcome "Marine's Dream" and the TBM to this year's event!
Tom will also static display
his newly acquired P-47D Thunderbolt and B-25 Mitchell in attendance with his L-4, Beech Staggerwing, Cessna 170, Grumman Widgeon, and SNJ during the event as well.

Warbirds Over Long Island Robert & Chris Baranaskas
Everyone in attendance is certain to enjoy P-40 Warhawk, SNJ-5 Texan, and P-51D Mustang that are owned by this family.
Following in his father’s footsteps; Bob learned to fly at the age of 17. He is a Commercial Pilot with Single, Multi Engine Instrument Ratings and has a Formation Waiver.
Bob developed a real passion for flying the same "Warbirds" his dad flew in WWII after purchasing his SNJ-5, a WWII Naval Advanced Trainer. He soon added a PT17 Stearman, an open cockpit WWII Army Air Corps Primary Trainer and eventually a P51 Mustang, the ultimate WWII Fighter, to his collection of Warbirds".

USAF F-15 Eagle Demonstration Team
The F-15 West Coast Demo Team is just one of the six single aircraft Demonstration Teams assigned to Air Combat Command (ACC). The Team is comprised of one Demo Pilot (Captain Tony "Baron" Bierenkoven), nine Maintenance personnel, and four Flight Safety Officers. The Aircraft themselves are not assigned to the team, but are actual operational fighters from the 33rd Fighter Wing at Eglin Air Force Base, Florida.
The U.S. Air Force’s Air Combat Command Single-Ship Demonstration Teams perform precision aerial maneuvers, demonstrating to the public the unique capabilities of the Air Force’s high performance aircraft. ACC Single-Ship Demonstration Team members also exhibit the professional qualities the Air Force develops in the people who fly, maintain and support these aircraft. Check out Video by Airshowfansh

Jim Beasley Jr.
One of the most effective aircraft of World War II, the North American P-51 Mustang was first developed to meet a British requirement of 1940. Needed desperately because of the grave situation in Europe, the project was completed ahead of the 120 day schedule set by the United Kingdom. The first Mustangs were powered with Allison engines, but while this engine performed well at lower altitudes, power output rapidly declined above 12,000 feet. This power problem prompted North American to look at the Rolls-Royce Merlin engine to power the Mustang. The Merlin engine was found to perform extremely well at all altitudes and rapidly increased the flexibility of the aircraft. The P-51B was the first variant to use the Merlin engine. Check out Video by Airshowfansh

US Navy Blue Angels
The U.S. Navy Flight Demonstration Squadron, Blue Angels, is stationed at Sherman Field, NAS Pensacola, Florida. The squadron is scheduled to fly 70 air shows at 35 locations in the United States during the 2007 season. The squadron spends the winter (January through March) training pilots and new team members at Naval Air Facility (NAF) El Centro, California. The mission of the Blue Angels is to enhance Navy and Marine Corps recruiting and to represent the naval service to the civilian community, its elected leadership and foreign nations. The Blue Angels serve as positive role models and goodwill ambassadors for the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps. VIDEO T
hanks John for shooting the video!

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Sharing The Passion

The reasons I wanted my Private Pilot License are many; to experience the joy of flight, fulfill my boyhood dream and accomplish a goal that would take determination, sacrifice, hard work and discipline. During my journey to this unbelievable destination I learned a lot about me. I was raised to work hard, believe that I can do anything I put my mind to and believe in myself or realize the self confidence I have in my very being. Obtaining this license tested my confidence and actually at the end, in prep for my oral and check ride had me questioning myself if I could even really do it.

I decided to keep a journal of my training for a number of reasons. The first as a reminder and the second a chance to look back and see how I handled the achievement of new goals, the flat times of hitting those learning plateaus and as my first instructor said, "mastering patting my head and rubbing my tummy" with reference to landings. That saying has held new meaning ever since that day.

I completed my quest for my private pilot license on July 17, 2006 with 1.1 hours of check ride time. That for me is like a second birthday, never to be forgotten and as I approach fifty we really don't need to have a special celebration. A quiet flight with my Bride will be just fine!

As you can tell I continued on with the journal to document our travels. It's a fun way of looking back and to share our fun with friends and family. I was moved to write this today because of a private message I received on one of the forums I frequent. I was very surprised and yet thrilled that my flight training journal may have helped someone understand that they were not on that "learning island" alone, that we have all been there at one time or another. As I stated in an earlier post when our friend Kim took her very first flight "EVER", sharing the passion of flight has got to be the greatest feeling a pilot can have.....knowing that in some small way my journal may have helped another pilot in training or at least provide some laughs makes it all worth it. Almost a year later and loving every second I can get in the air, I can honestly say that you folks on the fence best get out there and get flying, your missing a GREAT TIME!

Here is the PM I received without the names....Thanks for the PM it made my day!

I wanted to take the opportunity to tell you how much I enjoyed reading your Blog. we're about the same age ( I'm a little older). I started training for my PPl about six months behind you and I can't tell you how helpful it was to me. I got my license December 6th.

My wife and I are going to xxxxx for the long memorial day weekend and once again I have to thank you for the idea ( from your blog) of contacting xxxxx to do some flying when we're out there. I'll let you know how it turns out.

Anyway you know somebody is reading your Blog Thanks for posting!!!

Hey Gary, I was just was reading your blog. Just want you to know that your blog has helped me also. I am also 49 and did my checkride July 25. Just a week after yours. You were just enough ahead of me to let me know what to expect coming up next. As long as I've been reading your blog and forum posts I feel like I know you pretty

Saturday, May 19, 2007


About 5:30 am it looked really nice outside as I waited on Maggie to "take care of business". Upon returning to the comforts of the house I double checked my flight plan, pretty basic, and printed out the info. I made a call to FSS in Williamsport around 7am to confirm my findings. Overall VFR today with clouds and showers moving into the area around 1930Z. A final check on the POA forum and it's a GO for WINGS 07!

Mary and I had packed the truck last night with chairs and our cooler along with her potato salad this morning. We made a stop for fuel, cash and refreshments at the local Exxon then headed to the airport. Pre-flight for 679er completed we fire up and get clearance to taxi for a 27 departure, VFR to the North.

METAR KILG 191251Z AUTO 32011KT 10SM CLR 14/05 A3007

Cleared for take off we roll out and climb to the west with a short call to the Wilmington tower for a right turn on course. The tower sounded bored and respond in a ho hum right turn on course approved. The ride was bumpy but it made for a fun ride tracking the MXE VOR, once crossing it, then tracking the outbound 64* radial for 23 miles or so to KLOM. I remember Adam mentioned the quarry for the 45* to runway 24. Hey not to bad here is the quarry so I make the call, "wings traffic, Archer 28679er, 3 mile 45* for left downwind 24 wings".

I found "A" quarry, the wrong one as I found out. I turned to position for my 45* for 24 and thought I was making my way. I then spotted the airport and immediately climbed to 2500 to clear the upwind departure area. I re-announce my new/corrected position and make my way to the cross wind, left downwind , base and final. The winds were kicking just a bit and made for an interesting landing. On short final I felt a good drop out but corrected with throttle and continued in. Once below the tree line you can feel another drop as the wind is now blocked somewhat. Just got to love crosswinds....not a bad landing followed by a long roll out to the contest area. Thank God no judges were around for a score. Ed Fred held up the sign for ground contact and we flipped over to check in.

We were first in this morning and got 679er parked for the day. I didn't feel as bad after watching the winds play with most of the other attendees. It was a blast meeting everyone and trying to help out in some way. Andy did a fantastic job with all the cooking and Mary and I did have fun serving the chow. Smithfield Foods provided all the food and waht good food it was! The menu consisted of the following; BBQ pulled Pork, BBQ pulled Chicken, hot dogs and hamburgers, cole slaw and potato salad. Mary also made 5 lbs of potato salad that went in a hurry. This yaer Carmen provided the fantastic spinich balls with a spicey sauce dip that once again was the talk of the tent. The ground crew finally made their way to the tent for eats. Ed was working the ground crew along with Lee, Bob, Gary and I think Grant (sorry if I missed anyone). Leslie was busy taking pictures along the flight line and around the tent area. Adam was just plain everywhere and he had to be chased down with a plate of food by Kaye so he would take a moment to eat. I must also mention Adam's two great kids. Nice kids that really handled themselves very well with all the goings on, kudo's to their folks! I will link to the pictures once they are up on the POA forums. On the top right you will see some of the gathering taken by TeenDoc and on the Left Bob and I discuss the world of aviation.

With the cloud layer closing in and rain to the north Mary and I decided to pack up and load 679er for the short hop home. First trip had the chairs and Mary's flight bag with the extra clothes from the morning chill. The second round we hauled the cooler and packed everything in. We said our goodbyes and headed out. A taxi to runway 24 for our run up and we announce departure on 24. A quick re-check of the traffic and we're off. At 1200' we pass through showers and bump our way to 2500'. Looking off to the North the clouds and rain are now chasing us home. Finally a break from the bumps as I turn to 210* and opt for direct to KILG. With the WX moving in I can pass on the extra VOR work to MXE and instead punch in DQO VOR at 114.0 and spin for a direct to.

I contact Wilmington Tower at 10 miles out, Wilmington Tower Archer 28679er....Wilmington Tower 697? again? Tower, Archer 28679er 10m to the north east, 2.5 level,inbound for full stop with Uniform. 679er say destination on field....679er for Red Eagle.....679er report 2 mile right base 27....2 mile right base 27 for 679er. Whew....that seemed like it took forever. At the three mile right base position the Tower clears me to land on 27 and I read back. It was bumpy enough low and slow at 2500' on the way home but now at pattern altitude 1080' it was like a first timer trotting a horse and not posting (noting here that I rode western and still have my roping saddle). Adding the first notch of flaps on right base I crab my way in for 27. Adding the second notch of flaps I clear the trees a bit high on my glide slope. No worry there is a lot of concrete ahead of me on 27. Over the numbers and adding the last notch of flaps I tap dance in with rudder inputs finally lining up to set 679er down a bit off center left but rolling out smooth for taxiway 'K'ilo 4.

METAR KILG 191751Z AUTO 33017G20KT 10SM SCT080 21/02 A2997

With 679er buttoned up we are heading for home. We stop to chat with our ramp neighbors who own a Piper 140 then part ways. I'm tired and hot I want to gulp down some cold water. As we exit the gate Mary stops the ML320 and I jump out, open the back up and grab water from the cooler. Mary drives home and I kick back and take in the cool breeze as the rain beats down on the window. We hated to leave the Wings Fly-B-Q early but I'm glad I made the call for a safe flight home.

Adam's Post from POA Forums

WOW ! Thanks everyone. This weekend was a marathon and I am looking forward to some sleep perhhaps a day or two will be enough. In all seriousness, Thank you to everyone who came to Support the Third Annual WingsFLYBQ those that came near and especailly thouse that came from afar; As always Ed Fred, and This year, Kent Shook and kate and Kents brother and his girl friend all the way from Madison Wisconson, Grant and Leslie from 1C5 in Romeo Ill, Kevin and Rich from Shelby Tennesee and Georigia respectivly, Thanks for making the trip It was great meeting you and seeing you all.

A special hats off to Brooke who slugged it all the way up and back in one day from Raleigh NC. Good Job Brooke be proud of yourself. I trust the ride home was a bit faster.

I REALLY enjoy doing this event and am super happy that everyone enjoyed themselves. But I have to say that I could not do it without the help of others. This started as a one man show with about 20 people and 9 planes three years ago. This year was the biggest yet. 75+ people and 26 Aircraft. Unfortuantly the Wx in New England and NY stunk or we would have had many more. But as I said I COULD NOT do this alone any more.Ed Fred, Bob Ciotti, Gary Shelby, Lee Kitson and new this year Eric and Scott Newcomber (hopefully new to our board to) and Andrew 'porky' Stanley (the most awesome BBQer on the planet , and a GREAT guy to boot were all just AWESOME. Thanks also to Gary and Mary Mascelli and Kaye for jumping in, in the chow line. Thank you all so much. We had a great time at my place where we grilled up Steak Sandwiches for those that arrived Friday night , The Shook 4, Leslie and Grant, Ed, Andrew and the locals, Gary Shelby ( who bought great beer) Bob Ciotti, and my daughter Rachel. Friday we also all got a lesson in how to prep REAL BBQ.

Saturday night we all headed into South Philly for some good Italian Food.The folks I met from POA are all such fantastic people. POA is truly more of a community than a board.

Prizes were as follows: (you could only win one prize)

The following won a $25.00 Gift certificate to the Pilot Shop at Montgomery County Aviation:

Precision Taxi - Missa YEA Missa
Spot Parking- Szabo (Cri Cri Pilot)
Furthest Distance Flown GA - Kent Shook
Furthest distance traveled Non GA- Andrew StanleyPrize

Flight Guide donated by Montgomery County Aviation:
Newest Private Pilot - Gary Mascelli

Prize Aviation Wx services book:
Last to Arrive and sticking it out - BROOK

BTW Hayden the Garden Gnome is Secure in the hands of Leslie and Grant. WHERE WILL HE GO NEXT? Again thank you all so much for comming. See you next year third saturday in May 2008

Friday, May 18, 2007

Delaware Aviation Conference

Thursday May 17, 2007

I managed to get signed up at the last minute and spent my work day attending the First Annual Delaware Aviation Conference. The conference was put on by the Delaware Pilots Association, which I am now a member of, and they hosted speakers from the FAA North east region and the Harrisburg Airport District Office. The Harrisburg ADO provides funding for our Delaware Airport projects.

The FAA talked about the hot topic "user fees" and in my opinion didn't really wow me all that much. He didn't seem prepared and avoided answering question that required a direct answer.....the ole beat around the bush routine. We got the low down on the "Next Gen" ATC wish list and some other current topic explanations.

I was really impressed with the Airport Manager from KESN, Mike Henry. This guy had it together, was very well spoken and had some interesting ideas for obtaining funding and working with the airport neighbors. A tip of the cap to this man for all he does and for all the positive work on behalf of GA. You folks at Easton are in very good hands!

Steve Williams, DRBA Airport Director gave a detailed report on the current and future plans for KILG and 33N, both airports operated by the Delaware River and Bay Authority. Steve has some really great ideas and his leadership skills and vision will serve the GA airports well. I hope he gets the backing from the FAA and the executives at the Authority.

The AOPA was represented and of course addressed user fees and the ongoing battle. Greg P? provided a detailed power point presentation (Phil Boyer's) and answered questions with out any problems. Nice to see my dues at work! By the way if your keeping score the AOPA smoked the FAA in this conference!

Finally the fun part of the day......looking at airplanes! The conference was held at the Dover AFB Air Mobility Command Museum so I was like a kid in a candy shop! I checked out the B17, C130, C141 and so many more. This place is easy to get to and fun to spend time reading and viewing these aircraft from our military history. Pictured top left is the F101B and on the right the F106 Delta Dart. Both type of aircraft represented flew out of DAFB.

The B17 "Sleepy Time Gal" nose art and front shot. I crawled all around this beauty and had a blast! They had a ball turrent or belly gunner set aside from the aircraft so that you could get a good look...I wouldn't fit in there, nor would I want to.

As I was leaving I managed to time it pretty good as I clicked off some C5 final approach shots....

Friday, May 04, 2007

KWBW...Into The Valley

A beautiful sunny day can only mean one thing, yes that's correct, a personal day off and some left seat time!

Mary and I decided to head north and take care of my parents cemetery plot in preparation for the Memorial Holiday. I grew up with the tradition of the Memorial day trek to pay respects to family members passed and fallen service men and women who provided the very freedoms we enjoy every day. I can remember as a youngster standing quietly as each service person who had passed had their name read aloud followed by the placing of a wreath at each towns wall of remembrance. At the end of each ceremony the honor guard would perform a 21 gun salute and all of us kids would scramble for the brass casings as if it made us part of the remembrance in some sort of way.

On to the flight...

We tried a new restaurant this morning that is on the way to the airport. The place was clean, the service and food very good. Hat's off to the Ranch House for making a comeback!

METAR KILG 041351Z 05012KT 10SM CLR 17/M02 A3028

Pre-flight completed we contacted Wilmington ground and received our taxi instructions. Holding short of runway 9 at 'K'ilo 5 I complete my run up. All is good to go! The tower responds to my call and clears us for take off noting traffic at our two o' clock. It was a bumpy ride to Wilkes-Barre this morning but great service from Philly Approach, Allentown Approach and Wilkes-Barre Approach made for a fun run. Mary and I watched for traffic as the congo lined formed to get into Philadelphia. One after another Philly Approach handed each aircraft over to the next for sequencing for landings. The great views today provided a long distance sighting of the cooling towers in Berwyck, PA from the Lehigh Valley, the wind turbines north west of Hazelton, PA and after crossing Blue Mountain the towers and wind turbines on the ridge line just south of Wilkes-Barre, Wyoming Valley. Winds favored runway 25 at WBW so on a short 45* for downwind we again announced our position. Down wind to base was smooth as we passed over Monoconick Island then turning final at the 8th Street steel bridge over the Susquehanna River. I was slow and in control as we crossed the fence and passed over some walkers with their dogs on this sunny day. I shed some airspeed now down to 60kts, stall horn moaning and very slight chirps. A very nice landing and roll out. One of the Valley Aviation folks showed us the way to our tie down and provided chocks.

METAR KAVP 041454Z 00000KT 10SM CLR 14/M04 A3028

Enterprise provided transportation today as we loaded up our gardening tools and made way for the flower/plant shops. All the goodies in hand we planted pink geraniums (My Mom's favorite color) and mulched. As we finished up two planes were doing pattern work and the left downwind for runway 7 flys directly overhead. I could only wish my Pop was still here to take a ride with me only to land in the valley he grew up in.

We made a quick stop at Angelo's pizza just down the road from WBW at the Midway mall. Pizza and calzone were good and the tea refreshing for under 20 bucks. We left the rental car at the flight line and the keys at the FBO. Enterprise said they would p/u before 5pm.

We said our goodbyes and thanked the folks at Valley Aviation for their service. Runway 7 was our ticket out so we pre-flighted, climbed in, fired up and taxied out. I turned slightly to 75*-80* in order to follow the river for noise abatement. Left cross wind and downwind has me just about overflying the cemetery. I rocked the wings for my Pop and exited the area on the left base turn out. We fought a bumpy ride home the entire flight but I really felt good about maintaining course and altitude.

METAR KAVP 041754Z 36012G20KT 10SM CLR 18/M05 A3022

Philly Approach was busy so at 20 miles north of Wilmington I canceled and descended to 3000'. I was to report a 4 mile final as instructed and scrubbed off the last bit of altitude to be at 1080 for the call. I was cleared to land on one nine with a jet following me in no. 2 and a Cessna no. 3. I saw one aircraft holding short as we came over the numbers and greased the landing. I maintained power while raising the flaps and turned off the first taxiway, 'Kilo' to clear for the jet inbound. The tower made a very fast call to me "679er ground point seven" I acknowledged and once across the hold short made the call. "Archer 679er for Red Eagle", the response "679er Red Eagle, Thanks" Mary said that Citation was hot on our six and as I rolled from the hold short he was landing on a short final.

METAR KILG 041851Z 15007KT 10SM CLR 19/M02 A3020

Another fun day flying! Now it's home to relax, drink some ice tea and recharge the battery, my battery that is. Next up the WINGS FLY-B-Q at KLOM.