Saturday, June 13, 2015

How Can You Be So Calm ?

Just after Noon today, I had a harrowing, yet exhilarating experience:
I was flown in a small airplane ... by my son.

A few important factoids:

Josh Jr at the helm
- Josh Jr has never flown before today (never actually been in an airplane either!)
- The actual pilot never left his seat ... but his hands were off the steering column for MOST of the flight (except the takeoff, final approach, and landing).
- No one in the plane vomited.
- Everyone in the plane was treated to several moments of unplanned weightlessness.
- I cannot say I was never worried about my safety, but I was more impressed by my son and his courage, ability to learn, and composure during what he later dubbed 'way longer than I thought I'd be responsible for flying!'

Carlos, hands OFF the controls,
calmly instructing Josh Jr ... as he flies
Now as to the title of today's post, the actual pilot, Carlos, was unbelievably CALM throughout the whole experience - including some arguably scary situations.  In fairness, he has logged over 500 flight hours and clearly has enough experience to know when there is real danger versus perceived danger.  But it was HIS plane we were in (not a cheap plane either!) and he barely knew our group and certainly had almost no understanding of whether or not Josh Jr was capable of being the 'pilot' for any duration of time.

I suppose it is true that the more experience you have, the easier it is to remain calm and in control of your emotions in the face of challenges.  There's a life lesson to be learned here ... but it may take a few more days of reflection for me to find it.  At least my stomach isn't bouncing around now.

Song Of The Day:
The view from our plane, shortly
after takeoff - right as Josh Jr took
control of the aircraft
If you listen to ANY pop radio, I am certain you've heard the song "Geronimo" by Sheppard, but I've linked the acoustic version in this post for two reasons: first, I thought the words 'geronimo' and 'bombs away' during the flight today; and second, being in the airplane without the support of the actual pilot shares some similarities to a version of a song that is stripped of the support of heavy instruments and electronics.  In fact, Josh Jr did much better after the pilot instructed him to focus on the horizon ahead instead of the many instruments on the dashboard.  Sometimes it is better/easier to go with the basic senses.



  1. It was a beautiful day for a flying lesson. So jealous.

  2. It was a beautiful day for a flying lesson. So jealous.