Category Archives: Family

The Long Road

By lex, on October 27th, 2009

It’s raining in West Florida, a warm, soft but insistent rain that seems to lack awareness of its own mortality. I sit in my son’s truck in the parking lot before his apartment in the darkness with the heater on, the windshield fogged, watching the raindrops form their mosaic, the larger ones gaining mass, starting to move, swallowing their neighbors up whole before racing to the bottom of the glass where they disappear out of sight, anonymous, ephemeral.

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We’re Off

By lex, on October 23rd, 2009

Heading out in an hour or so with Son Number One on that long drive to Pensacola, Florida – the cradle of naval aviation. No intention to post over the next few days, so you’re welcome to talk among yourselves. Here or over on the other side.* Which, by the way – and I know that an “off the air notice” is a bad time to rattle the cup – but what with the server spikes we’ve been enduring the tip jar has been drained, and it’s out of pocket, I am, keeping this place humming. If anyone felt inclined to throw a fin in the jar, that’d be taken as a kindness.

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Today?

By lex, on August 7th, 2011

Today I took the day off. Played golf in the morning (80 at Torrey Pines North), flew twice in the afternoon, took the Hobbit out to the cinema, then out for appetizers and adult beverages.

Message ends.

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Weekend Round-Up

By lex, on July 31st, 2011

No flights this weekend, so your host was free to indulge hisself, like. Played an early morning round o’ golf at MCAS Miramary, and shot an asymmetric 48/38.

Because you care to know.

This has become something of a habit with me of late, fierce struggles on the front nine followed by relatively smooth sailing on the back. It’s a mystery.

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Tanker, Posit?

By lex, on July 2nd, 2010

Oh, just droning along up there:

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Great News / Meh News

By lex, on May 27th, 2010

So, Son Number One, whose travails  many of your are familiar with, has finally received an up-chit for to learn how to fly on the Navy’s dime. The last of several probably unnecessary tests having confirmed that his heart was in great shape. He’s very happy to have this set of hurdles behind him, and I of course am happy for him.

In one of those curious synchronicities, it turned out that an occasional reader – an absent friend I’ve never met – learned of his travails in these pages. A medical professional as it turns out, as was his bride. They opened their hearts and home to the young man, and helped him navigate the shoal waters of the system. Not by doing anything inappropriate from a standards of care perspective. But by just being there for a very young officer in a confusing situation at the very beginning of his career. Facing up against NAMI can be a daunting prospect for an ensign, who doesn’t really know yet that all of the professionals he passes by have the best interests of the service at heart. And that he, being one of those servicemen, is their reason for existence rather than a number to be cut. It was exceptionally kind, and I’m indebted.

He starts training right away. That’s the good news.

The “meh” news?

There Are Currently More Student Pilots Pre-Loaded Than Slots Available

In an effort to reduce and stabilize the current wait time for training, the Navy is seeking to decrease the number of officers in the Aviation Preflight Indoctrination (API) student pilot pre-load. Reductions to aviation fleet requirements and recent material challenges with training aircraft have caused the student pilot population to exceed the optimal preload by approximately 200 personnel.

We never seem to get the whole “accessions/requirements” things quite right. We have a long history of offering too many billets and then radically cutting them, only to realize later * the magnitude of our mistake.

Some will get attrited. Most will be successful. Someone has to finish first.

The difference between the three categories will come down to native adaptability – about which one can do nothing – and heart.

I’m not overly concerned. Your man has heart.

 

 

* 10-03-2018 Link Gone; no replacements found  – Ed.

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Madurday

By lex, on May 22nd, 2010

Mad busy all the live-long day: Eldest daughter finishes her first year in Portland early in June, and she enthusiastically endorsed my but lightly considered trial balloon to come, pick her up and fly her home for the summer rather than spend a cuppla days fighting the freeways.  How much much have you got, I asked, a-thinking about the Cardinal, and more specifically about weight and balance. Roughly 978 pounds gross weight being available to an empty airplane, but some nearly seven hundred pounds of that being taken up by your non-trivially burdensome correspondent, his really-ought-to-eat-more daughter and 60 odd gallons of 100 octane, low lead gasoline at six pounds to the gallon, give or take.

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