On my I Believe I can Fly post, there is more to the story and I've decided to tell. Some of you may think he's lost it and that's ok, as my father always said if they don't pay the mortgage does it really matter what they think...Hmmmmm...I guess not....so here's the deal. When Mary and I went to Wilkes-Barre last weekend it was for two reasons. The first was to prove to myself I could indeed still fly an airplane. The second was to take care of my parents grave site. While cleaning things up and planting some flowers I found this stone; flat, smooth and oval in shape. I tucked it in my pocket and finished all tasks then headed back to KAVP.
Fast forward to my early morning lesson Sunday, March 22nd. I pulled up out front early as usual and listened to the radio. Oldies 98.1 had some discussion group on so I searched for something else to occupy my time. 101.1, some easy listening station (yeah, I'm an old fart) had something on so there it sat. I took my rock with me, wanted to bring it flying, beats me felt some connection with my family's home town and my father. I took it out and said to myself I wish I had your strength Dad, I need to get this flying stuff done, should I stay or switch, I really wish he was here to talk to. Needles to say we were very close and I often try to think what he would do in situations. Ok here is where it gets really hokey, that song came on the radio, I swear! I believe I can fly. Call me crazy, it was a sign, or maybe I am really crazy. I listened to it, to the end, then got out and walked in the school. I filled out the paper work, grabbed the clip board and keys and went out to pre-flight. Eight Lima Alpha was covered with frost, a no go. It was also left unplugged overnight strike two and there was no room to push the schedule this day, strike three. I walked back to the office, turned in the keys and said I was going home. I decided it was time for a change.
Ok, fast forward to today....
METAR KILG 281151Z AUTO 07011KT 6SM -RA BR BKN007 OVC028 08/07 A2993
The rain let up as soon as I got the cover folded and stored in my truck, go figure. I took on nine gallons of the good blue stuff and completed a sump test. The pre-flight checked out perfect except for my butt slipping on the extended flap. It was pretty neat catching myself and then performing the customary look around to make sure nobody was doubled over laughing. No harm done and no extra damage to my hip. Speaking of hips, I was so pumped to go fly today I didn't even take any Advil, woo baby the adrenaline was pumping. Chuck walked up shortly after I climbed aboard to get things set up. We discussed today's lesson which included filing an IFR flight plan for local work shooting some approaches. On tap for today was ILS RWY 1, GPS RWY 1, and LOC RWY 1. We reviewed wx (I printed out three pages) and the process to file which I had on one of my spare home made flight plan forms. I wasn't sure about what I would file for so we talked about that and I made my notes.
1-800 WX- BRIEF for FSS to get my plan filed and an additional check for any TFR's and wx at Chester County KMQS since it was not available this morning and we may want to go there. All the info was noted and it was time to get 679er started. Primer, beacon, battery, full rich, crack the throttle, pump on, clear prop! She rumbles a bit and then gets smooth as I lean mixture, shut the pump and toggle the alternator. I turn on the avionics master and that's when we notice the Macy's store front blinky lights. We recycled, gave it a push and a tug but no go, it was cooked. Avionics master off, lean the mixture and raise the rpm's and 679er is now quiet. All switches off, key off and removed we open up and climb out, lesson scrubbed.
We did manage to have breakfast at Arners and do some Oral test prep then followed up with some healthy hangar flying. I went back to 679er and cleaned out my flight gear and waited for Gary (the owner) to meet me. In the mean time I got a hold of someone at Red Eagle Avionics about their stuck gate and mentioned about getting 679er in Monday morning for radio work. The man from Red Eagle walked out to the plane with me and pulled the radio, checked everything out and reinstalled. He wanted to look if he had anything in the shop we could swap out. As we walked back Gary came through the gate and we made plans to drop off our radio for work. The LED problem will need to go back to the factory, a three day turn around. Red Eagle gave me a loaner for tomorrow's lesson! I was back in business.
I'll update tomorrow....