The ferry pilot biz can be frustrating sometimes, like this afternoon when Super Girl and I arrived in Campo Grande Brazil hoping to make a quick gas and go but were instead informed by the hard working boys in blue, Air Force weather guessers, that the entire area we were intending to fly into was full of big red blobs, AKA thunderstorms. After much hair pulling and teeth gnashing I chose the old discretion vs. valor thing and did my best brave brave Sir Robin imitation and courageously ran to a hotel for the night. The fact that I had SG with me in no way influenced my decision, however intelligent it may have been. The first half of the day, not counting the three hours spent battling the customs dragons and the landing fee ogre, was not too bad. After takeoff, minus the twenty minute engine start delay due to some damn thing or another, we were granted permission to over fly Iguazu falls, “Just let us know when your done.” said our blessed controller. The next fifteen minutes of pilot bliss is what puts today in the win column.
Well we finally made it off the damn ground! When I woke up this morning and saw that the forecast was worse than yesterday I have to admit I was a little bummed. But we got the plane ready anyway because it looked like we could at least make the first hour and a half leg if good weather. I had a little bit of a heart attack when I asked “Where’s the airworthiness certificate?” We found it attached to the aft bulkhead after a frantic search.
post break: Just came back from dinner, starting at 10:30, and now have 6 hours before the wake up call so no more tonight. Here’s a cockpit shot to tide you over.
Retired Air Force Col. Ralph S. Parr, a double ace pilot who flew 641 combat missions during three wars and was credited with downing the last enemy aircraft of the Korean conflict, died Dec. 7 in New Braunfels, Tex. He was 88.
We finally got the AVANAC, Brazilian entry permit, all sorted out. Got the life raft, got some more jungle survival equipment, got our snacks and everything ready for an early morning departure, only to find out the weather is playing the fool now. In the sat pic. below you can see the front that is barring our way. The big red blob is going to be right over our second proposed stop tomorrow. Might be a long trip
Been a busy two days. The Bonanza got inspected and approved for US registration, I flew with the owner and then his instructor to learn the GPS and autopilot a little better, not that I needed it but it looked good on camera, and we were treated with a Uruguayan BBQ at the airport complete with a band made up of flight students and their instructors. We filed for the permission to enter Brazil today and should have an answer tomorrow. The plan is now to leave early Friday morning but we all know how plans go.
When I wrote this post I was having trouble with the hotel’s internet connection, go figure, and left it to go and have dinner with the camera crew. When I got back there was an email from the Brazilian FAA saying that there were two mistakes in our request for entry form. Yea, that’s gonna cost us a day.
Santa Claus, like all pilots, gets regular visits from the Federal Aviation Administration, and the FAA examiner arrived last week for the pre-Christmas flight check.
In preparation, Santa had the elves wash the sled and bathe all the reindeer. Santa got his logbook out and made sure all his paperwork was in order. He knew they would examine all his equipment and truly put Santa’s flying skills to the test…
The examiner walked slowly around the sled. He checked the reindeer harnesses, the landing gear, and Rudolph’s nose. He painstakingly reviewed Santa’s weight and balance calculations for the sled’s enormous payload.
Finally, they were ready for the checkride. Santa got in and fastened his seatbelt and shoulder harness and checked the compass. Then the examiner hopped in carrying, to Santa’s surprise, a shotgun.
“What’s that for?!?” asked Santa incredulously.
The examiner winked and said, “I’m not supposed to tell you this ahead of time,” as he leaned over to whisper in Santa’s ear, “but you’re gonna lose an engine on takeoff.”