Sunday, March 2, 2008

I’m a pielott..pylot..pilote... I fly planes.

It's official, I'm a PILOT! Yesterday, March 1st, roughly 4 months to the day after I started taking flying lessons, I passed my oral and practical exam. Since the very beginning I had hoped to do it in that amount of time and within 50-60 hours of training. I actually flew 42 hours before going for my check ride, which I was really surprised to have done.

Yesterday, Melissa and I flew up to Anderson, S.C. to do the exam with her favorite Designated Flight Examiner, Randy Haralson. He was exactly the type person she described; funny, sarcastic, fair and a general smart ass like us. I felt comfortable talking with him, so I knew that things would be OK. We started with the oral exam at the FBO in their conference room, and 1.5 hours later we were done. The oral exam is basically a continuation of the written exam, but the questions are asked by the DFE. I have continued to study for it since passing the written exam about a month ago. I was more worried about the oral exam than I was the practical. It was tough! But again, Randy was fair and I learned a few more things and will be a better informed pilot because of it.

Next was the practical exam and it went as follows (I'm writing this down now before I forget for future reference): Started off with a soft field takeoff, flew my flight plan to the first check point, diverted towards an alternate airport and stated distance and time it should take to get there, slow flight, power off stall, power on stall, steep turn, simulated IFR "hood" time with recovery from an uncoordinated attitude, flew a VOR heading TO the station, with hood off we practiced emergency landing procedures, turn about a point (I actually used the VOR beacon!), soft field landing (we counted the second touch down.... it was windy!), short field landing to a full stop, short field takeoff, no flap forward slip to land, GREASED the landing. Certified private pilot!

And since today is so beautiful, I'm taking Matthew Morris up for a ride this afternoon, my first official passenger! Thanks for all of the support and encouragement, it was fun! So who wants to go fly somewhere????

Who's f@*#!&g this chicken? That's right, me!
A more "sensible" pose!
Two pilots on a joy ride back to PDK.
A beautiful sunset
This beautiful artwork was done by Melissa when I soloed. My "tail feathers" have been up on the wall at the flight school and I finally brought it home. Notice the drawing of my mom and dad on the right when they were in the tower! I was a little more politically correct that day when I landed..... Who loves this chicken?


Sandy & Dick said...

Love the pics! Hope Matthew has good insurance (just kidding!). Guess I now will move to the backseat and let you be Dad's co-pilot. We are mighty proud of you...xoxoxoxoxoxoxo

Empress Bee (of the High Sea) said...


smiles, bee

HaleyD said...

Let's go!!!!!!!!! We are sooo proud of you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Joy said...

Congratulations, Brian! I have a son-in-law who would go flying with you any time! (So would Anna, actually). I am a proud and happy "aunt"! Hugs,

Becky said...


Too busy flying to post any more blogs I see! ;)

Sandy & Dick said...

Step away from the plane, and update the blog. Your mom has spoken!...xoxoxo