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Flying With Bruce
July 28, 2004

(click an image for a larger view)

Bruce finally took me flying. The occasion was actually a dry run in preparation for a date. To impress a girl, Bruce was planning to fly her over to Friday Harbor on Orcas Island for dinner. But before he took her, he took me.

So, on a beautiful Wednesday evening in late July, Andrea, my friend David Elkayam, and I met Bruce at Skagit County Airport where Bruce had rented a four-seat Cessna. After completing his pre-flight check, Bruce taxied the plane out onto the runway and off we went.

David Elkayam sat up front on the flight over. Bruce managed to scare us all by putting the plane into a stall and doing some steep banked turns over the tops of some sailboats, but otherwise, it was a very nice, uneventful 30 minute flight over to the island.

Once on the ground, it took a few minutes to taxi the plane to a parking area, shut off the engine, and literally push it (by hand) into its parking spot. Bruce tied the plane down, and then we walked the half-mile into the town of Friday Harbor.

We had a wonderful dinner in Friday Harbor. The food was excellent. What a decadent way to live. Doesn't everyone charter a plane and fly to an island for dinner?

When we finished dinner, we walked back to the plane, took off, and began our flight back to the mainland. As soon as the plane was about 500-feet off the ground, Bruce turned the controls over to me. After leveling off at 2000 feet, I followed Bruce's instructions and flew the plane back to Skagit Country Airport. Bruce talked me through the maneuvers to bring the plane onto its final approach. He took over the controls when we were about 40 feet from the runway.

After landing, David Elkayam and I switched seats and we took off again so that he could have a chance to fly and land the plane.

It was a great time and we can't wait to do it again.

copyright 2001-2008, David S. Cohn. All Rights Reserved.