Starting the adventure

Starting the adventure


Time to leave finally arrived.

It was really hard until the very last moment, as some clearances were not arriving nor the iridium tracking system was working. Concerning that tracking, the problem was related mainly with the satellite antenna position, as it was on top of the aethalometer (the scientific device to analyse the air for black carbon). The aethalometer use a laser and may be it blocks the satellite waves into the antenna. It was strange because the data logger are just on the side and works perfect.

So, the antenna was moved away and since then, the iridium extreme phone was receiving the position and sending it to everybody.

It seems that the speed calculated by the system is low. The fact is that the plane is really much faster, so a way to have a good approach is playing the distance versus time.

Saturday the 19th, we went to Cuatro Vientos airfield. There, the spanish Real Aeroclub Presidente Jose Luis Olias was waiting to help. So we arrived at 1100 am, and at 1200, the plane was ready in the display area. A beautiful Piper from the 2WW, was by my side as his pilot/owner Jose Fernandez Coppel was going to escort the RV8 during the departure.

Some media reporters were present as many members of my familly and friends.IMG_4321

The wait at the holding position point of the active runway was really long. The controllers that no longer at State professionals, were not ¨operative¨ nor ¨expediting¨although they were nice and kindly.

So, once we took off, we were flying the extreme envelope: myself very close to the stall, and the Piper almost a top speed. But we did manage for a formation flight.

A short hop to Casarrubios airfield to have lunch with my friends and familly and then, the departing take off at 1600 local time.

You know, everybody crying, and praying…

Just kidding !

Flight was uneventful, and fun started after landing.

At Jerez (LEJR) FTE Jerez training School was waiting for me, but the airport considered me a millionaire flying a private jet. It was as though I had used this private jet rental cost estimator tool and had flown in on the lap of luxury! So, I was parked at some 200 meters of FTE Jerez, and 800 meters of the hold up airport people.

The follow me driver asked me if I wanted a bus… and ¨No, lady!¨ no bus for me.

And the fight started, and finished with an angry driver and myself going straight to the FTE Jerez access door. Even they sent the Guardia Civil, that are armed security militarized people ( and nice !).

Welcome by the School representative Alex Padina, was very warm. They sponsor the flight and they provided me a good room and some clothing, because I was invited to their students graduation dinner.

I am flying like Robisson Crusoe, so the clothing they provided me allowed me to have a professional pilot look, instead of a beggar one !

What a nice school they are. All the buildings, streets and everything was perfect. The funny fact is that the place was a spanish Air Force Base, were P3 Orions antisubmarine aircrafts were deployed.

And also it was where I was based during eight years flying those fighters !

So, plenty of images came into my mind !

I first payed everything at the airport offices, including the bus I would have to take for the 800 meters remaining to reach the plane early next morning. Some $50 for the trip, and some $100 for the landing taxes, and some $1000 for the fuel.

What can I say?…..nice?

The dinner at the center of Jerez, inside one of the biggest Sherry (that means Jerez) wine producers was really rewarding. There, I met the big FTE Jerez Boss who is Oscar Sordo. They did the best to take care of me. Even, they introduced me to all the graduated pilots and their families, and of course, I have to take the microphone and speak to everybody.

I liked very much what I have seen. And also the new graduated. They have a good actitude and….their hair was cut !

Around 2330 , Alex returned me to my room but I didn´t have much rest.

0520 am get up, and a lot of emotions around …

One Comment

skypolarisadmin / Feb 21, 2016 5:54 pm / Reply

What a great start to the flight Michel! I am sure you will meet the same friendly people and be welcomed everywhere you land.

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