Getting Current

After deciding to commit to flying again, I returned to my original flight school. After 18 years, that is an interesting experience. Images of the flight school, the equipment, and the aircraft were very different. I recall a beta video player those many years ago, where I spent hours viewing videos of the training program. Of course, as a certificated pilot, the process is much simpler. Sitting down with the instructor to determine what you remember and spending an hour in the aircraft quickly sets the pace for getting current. I was very surprised how much I remembered about operating the aircraft.

Of course, I did some study prior to tracking down an instructor and jumping in the Skyhawk. I pulled out my old ppsel books and purchased some new training programs on eBay. Studying up on the changes in regulations, reviewing the principals, and getting a refresher helped get me much more comfortable for that first visit and flight. I also spent a lot of hours envsioning the flights. I would sit and mentally walk through all the procedures, seeing every step of the flight as though I had never been away. When I finally went to the airfield, I was ready to go over everything with the instructor and take the aircraft for a flight.

The ground time and the air time all went very well. I felt prepared for the questions and for the flight. I was still nervous since I hadn't flown for 18 years. But it was amazing how easily it all came back. A little rusty, but the skills were all still there. Unexpectedly, the instructor signed me off after the first hour (or so). He advised I get a lot of practice and would make himself available for more time if I desired, but felt I had the skills and was making safe decisions. I was confident in what I was doing and knew I had a lot of practice to come. I made my next reservations and checked my logbook a second time for all the right entries. I was flying again!

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