Sorry, this story is a about a day or two late, and Alex kinda cockroached my title, but he left me the more creative version, and a different twist on the day. My life has gotten a little crazy with all the family medical crises mixed with teenager growing pains that I guess are standard in some lives. But why mine? Multiple grounded therapy sessions have nowhere near the therapeutic value of air time.
The range was looking nice, and these flights were just what my doctor ordered. I wish! Tuesday was looking to be one of those butter sweet downrange days. Unfortunately the cloud base put a lid on it again. But nonetheless, it was one of those magical days, about which my words would only fall on blind ears for those that do not fly.
Speaking of not flying, where has everyone been these days? We have a large roll on the books, but not many have been chasing airtime this year. Our visitors are getting more time than our locals! Granted, there are a few of us that have some liberal hours and tolerable wives [Editor's note: ha! I think he means tolerant], but there are others that have time constraints and they still make it, or try to make it happen more often than any of you. If anyone has an excuse for not flying because they can't find the time, then I am going to make you sit down with One-Eye, who will console you. NOT. Jim has been on launch and in the air more than most of the other jobbers. He works every day, but still manages to drive from town side to Kahana or Makapuu, for just a chance to fly. Last week, two days in a row, he drove, he hiked up and didn't get a flight, but he was there. Discouraged and ornery, because we are talking about Jim here, of course, but that doesn't stop him. On the weekends he has to drive from his home in Makaha, which is just about the furthest point on island, so guys and gals, don't make me sic One-Eye on you for your non-flying excuse. You know who you are.
Ok, back to my therapy, now that I have vented. I arrived early to Makapuu, and the air was looking okay, but slowing easing off, as I tied some new streamer tape at the LZ. I looked up at Juice, where Ike and Jayson were getting ready. Ike launched and found nothing, making a landing near Frank's LZ. I rushed over to pick him up, and he was still scratching his head. Couldn't figure out why he couldn't get up. Possibly at his age a lot more Sky-alis is in order.
We ventured back to Juice to watch Jayson give it a whirl. It started to pick up again. It looked okay, but Ike said this was what he had been feeling too. Jayson made it up, slowly. Ike had a short leash, and with no time left he drove me to Cactus trailhead. I started up to find it was getting a little stronger, so I turned back, ran down and caught Ike rounding the lookout. He dropped me back off at Juice where I scampered up the hill.
I laid out my gear, got ready and then realized I forgot my helmet. I would never fly without a helmet! (That comment was for a specific newby monkey). I flagged Ike at the Juice parking lot, and he gave me his. Finally, I was on the therapy couch, well in my new pod anyway, which is as comfy as a couch.
It was butter smooth, and I caught up with Jayson. He was getting his last short sleeve flight before heading back to Canada. But he'll be back here to his second home at the end of December. Spoiled, eh. Thankfully he snapped a shot for the cover here on his new Iphone 6+. Finally Iphone is catching up to the year 2000. I know I pick on the I,I,I,I people, but I am really looking forward to Alex getting one to upgrade his already awesome pics.
Jayson landed and left me flying solo, for a true therapy session. I flew out over the flats in Waimanalo, but it just wasn't ready yet and the clouds were sneaking in. Alex was texting me and I texted back that I was headed over to 'Okinawa'. My Droid must have heard me speaking well of an Iphone and jumbled up my text to remind me. Alex laughed, and said on his next text: I am calling Olomana, Okinawa from now on. Ok, one point for team Iphone.
Alex finally showed up with Alaska visitors Thai and Jerry. My battery was getting low, so I came in for a landing. I reloaded my radio batteries and my belly with a granola bar as we headed back to launch. Manics was now the call. I declared it a P-2.5 launch today. It was perfect for all locals and visitors with a short brief. I stayed on launch till everyone was airborne. In the air now were JK, Alex, Ike for a 2nd dose, Alaska Thai and Jerry. Mad Dog made an appearance at launch, but after twiddling his thumbs at Sandys he gave the day a thumbs down on PG flying.
Group Air-oma Therapy is my favorite! Now with fresh batteries I could talk up a storm. Sorry Jorge, doctor's orders. The docs say I have to talk more to get better, so I am thinking the doctor should get on a tandem. I will bet in 20 minutes they will sympathize with Jorge and deem me cured.
I headed straight for Pu'u O Kona. I didn't need to go back on the range, because it was just the perfect lift, but unfortunately cloudbase only allowed 2,000 feet. Alex and JK followed me. I guess I was the wind dummy of the day. We played along the edges of the clouds, topping out over the top of them every now and then to view the vast blueness out to sea and the mist covered town of Waimanlo below. Now this was some air cure for sure.
A helicopter buzzed below us, and we headed back towards Makapuu, where we were joined by more regulars in the air and at the LZ: Maui Doug, Frank and Jonathan. After I headed out, Ike went for his third flight, with MotorHead, Reaper and Miss Allegra. Poor girl seems to surround herself with senior citizens. Welcome home, MotorHead! I may have missed one or two here, but these pilot numbers are still way too small for such a good therapeutic day.
JJ Jameson is looking over my shoulder. He is quite content with the number of stories, but will always bitch about something. He twisted a quote from Groucho Marx: Take two flights and write it by morning. I shrugged him off with my favorite Groucho quote: It is better to have loft and lost than to never have loft at all.
Come on Guys and Gals, It's Time to Fly, Get Your Gear and Go!!!!!! Oh, I now have to add: Please. But don't forget, JJ Jameson isn't in therapy.