10 years. I’ve been working on my book for 10 years. I think. It seems like forever. What book you ask? Why the book I’ve written about my early years as an international ferry pilot of course. It’s called “FERRY PILOT” (clever right?) I really wanted to call it Fairy Tales but I thought it would come up when someone searches for the gingerbread man or something.
Anyway, the book is finally done and will be launching on Amazon today and I couldn’t be happier! When I started this project I had no idea it would take so long. My original goal was just to jot down a few of my flying stories so I could share them with my family. (also with myself in my old age. It was surprising how fast little details of stories that I thought were burned into my memory faded.) But over time the project became a full fledged book. And a darned good one if you ask my opinion.
So here it is!
Here’s a tiny preview.
July 17, 1991
My mood darkened as I stared out at the massive light show laid out in front of me. I didn’t bother looking at the map for an escape path, there was none. And I’d passed the point of no return long ago. I needed to go east and the line of massive thunderstorms was in my way. As I approached the storm wall I felt insignificant, like a tiny ant at the base of a skyscraper. The boiling mass of dark gray towered above me, topping out at 40,000 feet? . . . 50? . . . higher? The unreachable tops of the powerful storm front didn’t matter to me though. (The tiny Cessna I was flying could barely make half that altitude on its best day) I was heading for the middle. Tightening my seat belt I studied the flashing clouds, looking for a weakness, a gap, anything that might increase my chances of survival. Not seeing any breaks in the wall I picked an area with the least amount of flashes, kicked off the autopilot and dove in.
Strong turbulence slammed into the plane as soon as I penetrated the cloud wall. I fought for control as I was tossed around like a rag doll. The sound in the cockpit was deafening as heavy rain pelted the windshield and airframe. Then, without warning, the floor gave way as I plunged over a thousand feet in just seconds. The strong downdraft made it feel like a trapdoor open beneath me. Loose items floated around the cockpit as I shoved the throttle to the stops and hauled back on the yoke, trying to arrest the uncontrolled descent. In spite of my efforts I was still going down at over two thousand feet per minute. Then a sudden updraft grabbed the plane and pushed me down in the seat as the altimeter spun back the other way. This cycle repeated several times while lightning flashed in the cockpit in a crazy strobe light show. I was almost completely out of control on a crazy roller coaster ride that I couldn’t get off of. The plane was being slammed around so much that I was worried the wings might come off. I slowed my airspeed down as much as possible and tried to dampen the crazy gyrations as the term “In-flight breakup” echoed in my mind.
Late breaking news. Apparently we don’t live in a flawless instant gratification world. When I uploaded the book onto Amazon I was informed that it could take as much a 72 hours to get the paperback version available for sales. So if you’re like me and hate reading Ebooks you will just have to wait.