I recently lost some family members in a plane crash. It probably hits a little closer to home due to the fact that I've always been involved in aviation. Aviation has touched my life in many ways, sometimes good, sometimes not so good. I've seen a lot of people lose their lives. More times than not, it seems to be pilot error. We've all made mistakes. I once had a school owner/instructor tell me, "If you land and tell me that you had the perfect flight, I'll never let you fly my planes again." There's always something you can improve on. You should always be your worst critic.
I read this quote and wanted to include it: Life is not measured in the number of breaths you take, but rather by the number of moments that take your breath away. This is what flying does for me.
On a lighter note, I made the repairs to my plane. I replaced all of the bearings and lubed them properly. I also went over the entire plane again, checking the tightness of all bolts and looking for anything I could find wrong. After assuring myself that my craft would bring me back, I started up and lined up for takeoff. I took a moment to remember the events of the last few days and promised myself to be extra careful. As I climbed out, I relaxed. It's always good to be back in the air. I circled around a lot to make sure the ailerons were working as designed and then headed toward my house. I flew over the rock quarries that are everywhere you look, and then headed over our new outlet mall. Never ceases to amaze me how many people flock to a place where they think they'll get a good deal. I'd rather pay a little more and not face the crowd. Anyway, I circled my house a couple of times and then headed east. I flew around the Dell Diamond, Nolan Ryan's baseball team plays here - the Round Rock Express. They were warming up for a game. I then looked down and saw a truck in a field. I suddenly felt a little worried as I realized that I was looking directly into the barrel of the machine they use to launch fireworks. I was in no danger, as they don't fire them off until after the game, but not my favorite place to be none the less. I headed back north for the field, checking out the new toll roads they're building. It's nice to see what so many people never will. It's also nice to fly over a big empty highway. If you have to have an engine-out, this is the place! Back at the field, I greased a landing and smiled as I had enjoyed another hour of flying.
Round Rock Premium Outlet Center
IKEA - new furniture store
Three shots of the Dell Diamond
I didn't stop to pay the toll! Catch me if you can.