Pres Takes Backseat To Son

History was indeed made yesterday. My son flew for the first time. And I don't mean his first trip on a plane. Rather he was the co-pilot!!!! I wish I could have been a bird in the sky! Or had a pic. When he goes "solo", I solo wanna be there!

He definitely enjoyed the experience. He may be a rookie, but he's way ahead as he's a quick learner and given to discipline. I'm so happy for him.

Listening to him caused me to recall the first time I flew when I was in Aviation in college (we won't discuss how many years ago!).

My Personal History
I had a wild and crazy instructor. I made the huge mistake of asking him what it's like when the plane goes into a stall???? You guessed it, he was more than delighted to show me. Yes, completely happy to scare the living heck out of me.

He politely demonstrated by taking the little Cessna into a dive. I think the stall alarm was drowned in a pool of screaming and devious laughter. MINE! HIS. You guess which was which.

Now, I'm wondering if he liked the idea of female pilots??

NEVER did I ask that question again or any others that even hinted it might harm my mental well being!

Well, until the next time. I learn lessons the hard way. Just about a year ago, when my hubby provided my first helicopter ride for my b/d, I "dumb-blond" another question to the pilot. "How do you move the copter from side to side?" With no verbal response, he tilted it on its side with me hanging on for dear life. Then upright. Then over to the other side. I wanted to show him the exit. But then overcoming my blond moment, I figured I wanted to land in one piece. All that to say, I still love flying.

The Sky's The Limit!
When people find out I was in Aviation at one time, the stereotypical question comes, "Oh, so you wanted to be a flight attendant?"

"Uh, not exactly." I didn't go through all that stall diving and the FAA exam to be a deified waitress in the sky. I'd never make a good waitress anyway. Just ask my friends.

Women With Wings
Looking back, I have to say one of my greatest accomplishments was getting past that limited viewpoint at the time. Walking into a sea of only men? I was immune and had little clue that I was helping, in my own little world, to pave the way for female pilots. By the way, female pilots represent only about 5% of the pilot population.

It didn't occur to me why the men were giving me penetrating daring, and glaring stares. No one told me that I didn't have the right to be there. So I innocently continued on. Now, I see. And I do understand more why some of the guys in my class exclaimed with a touch of dismay, "You passed the FAA exam, and we've taken it how many times and still have not passed it????"

It's a wonder any of them had anything to do with me crossing the gender line. Yet, I know they saw my heart. I was there to help them study, I was there to bring them yummy cookies for our breaks. You know, I played all the gender roles. Isn't that what women do best?

I've never forgotten those men, and I doubt they've forgotten me. Some resented me. Some loved me. Some ignored me. Some envied me. But all respected me.

Only years later did I begin to appreciate the challenge I seized and pursued. And to be proud that I took that horrific FAA exam and passed with an A. To this day, I'm not sure how I did it. Determination. I doubt I would do it again. Nor do I want to.

In a bazillion years, I would have never imagined the baton being passed on to an unborn child, my son. You can't imagine how that pleases me.

NOTE: Good Articles:
Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. The study, published in the May 2001

PHOTO of Cessna: clk here

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