Sunday, January 2, 2011


Why not make the first flight of the year a proficiency flight?  Commuting was fun, $100 hamburgers are fun, instrument practice is fun, but too much straight-and-level is too much.  Only one of my 13-year-old twins has expressed any interest in aviation, but maybe what her brother dislikes is too much straight-and-level, and while I would not turn him upside down, maybe a few lazy 8s would help him get the picture.  He said he would come, but he's still struggling to recover from mononucleosis and backed out at the last minute.  I gave him a raincheck and went alone.

The first pair of lazy 8s only served to show the poor farmers below that I was rusty, but after a few I started to get the feel.  Big grin.  Next I set off into the hills to find my daughter's ski trip, but the ceiling was a little too low.  I overflew the house on the way to a bunch of accuracy landings.  (I quit a little early to save some room in the checkbook to take my son out next week.)

We're already on the fast part of the analemma, so the days are getting longer quickly. I left the airport as the tower turned on the rotating beacon. Nice night...

Now that 2011 has begun, what happened in 2010? I didn't have a medical until late June, and my day job has become noticeably harder, and the glider club's Blanik was grounded by an Airworthiness Directive, so the total was pretty ugly: 57.6 hours, not exactly "professional pilot" territory. That included my personal record glider flight (3.8), one $100 hamburger split with a friend (who has since moved away), one family vacation, one trip to the glider port, and a handful of commutes to our other campus.

I flew no actual IFR (I filed once), and while I am current I am beginning to doubt my proficiency. My idea of proficiency is more exacting than most of the CFIIs I know, so maybe a good Instrument Proficiency Check someplace else would do the trick? At least I'd get a little cross country time.


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