scared face

Practice Flight?

baggage cart

So, I’ve been working on getting my Maine guide license, and I decided to fly up instead of drive.  I’m sitting in the airport in Boston looking out the window waiting for my plane to arrive and watching the time. When suddenly I realize, wait take off is in like five (5) minutes. I walk up to the counter and ask about my flight and the guy said “oh just walk down the stairs and someone will be around soon to guide you to the plane”. I thought to myself “That is weird, why would I need an escort.” When I  get down the stairs, there is only one person waiting. “Really! Only one person?”  We both got led outside. They then weigh our bags and then each person was weighed and the weights were recorded. Then we looked around but there was no plane just a luggage cart. When the luggage cart pulled away and there it was, this single engine plane. This plane could seat no more than four (4) people including the pilot. Well we boarded the plane and I am sitting right behind the pilot, so close in fact I could hear what was coming though her head set. Then I hear the person over the head set say  that we can proceed to the runway. The pilot could have just turned and told us both, being that we could hear what was being said over the head set. But no, she hits a switch and the over head speaker comes on and she said, no lie “attention all passengers we have been cleared to go to the run way (or something of the sort) please be sure that all seat belts are fastened, and all electronics are turned off and are not to be turned on during this flight.” I said “Did you really have to use the intercom?” She proceeded to the runway then took out a sheet of paper. Then she started going over her pre-flight checklist, but while doing that she was reading this sheet like she was not sure what was what. This was a little disheartening. I have a pilot that is reading a sheet on how to fly a plane. Really!!! We made it safely to the airport/ flight training school/ Thai restaurant/ Army reserve base/ bus station.

Upon landing I called my parents to inform them that I landed safely, and to tell them about this crazy fight and the pilot reading instructions while she flew the plane.

small plane

On the return flight, I got on the plane with the same pilot but it was a bigger eight (8) seat plane. After we all got weighed in again including our luggage and all of our weights were recorded. We  boarded the plane and noticed we had a co-pilot this time. So we are getting ready to take off and the co-pilot turns around and says “How’s everyone doing? We have a first time pilot today, It is one of her first flights.” On hearing those words I thought “What? she flew us from Boston in the dark with no co-pilot and this is one of her first flights? Are you kidding me?” Then he said, with out the over head speaker, “Please fasten your seat belts now and turn all electronics off and they can’t be used for the duration of this flight, and we will have a nice flight with a few bumps if everything goes well. Enjoy the flight.”

Now!!!!! I can’t wait to tell my parents the “rest of the story”…

scared face

One thought on “Practice Flight?

  1. you absolutely want the pilot to use a checklist. that discipline keeps aviation safety as good as it is. if doctors used more checklists in operating rooms, there’d be fewer tragic errors. Also, comms may be on a recorder. best of luck to you!

Leave a Reply