Stranded In The Southland

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Argh, Annother Tough Flight

This is getting frustrating. Yet more turning and climbing and descending, followed by more lame stall recoveries. I didn't seem to be getting it, and my generally mellow instructor seemed to just get more and more insistent -- "You've climbed 100 feet, get back." "Check your engine gauges." "Check your RPM." "You need to relax a little bit more in the plane." Ummm, yeah, I'll get right on that relaxing thing.

I finally got aggravated enough that I suggested he dial it back a little, 'cause I wasn't learning that way. I don't think he actually took that too well, and we had a frustrating conversation afterwards. He tried to explain what to do about the stall recovery and where I went wrong, and I tried to explain how I was getting confused by his different suggestions without context -- "Put your hand on the throttle." "Why are you on the throttle now?" Argh.

I actually called up the owner of the flight school to see if he could give me any insight into what I was missing. He suggested that I take a flight with him -- "We're a team here." That sounded like a good idea. Hopefully my flight tomorrow will go better.

Oh, well. I also picked up a headset at the local pilot's shop. Left to myself, I probably woulda gone for a Lightspeed, which is kinda ugly and not very robust, but cheap.

On the advice of my buddy T. at work, and my instructor, I wound up with a rather more expensive (but legendarily tough) David Clark H10-13.4S headset. I kinda decided that this was not the time to let my oh-so-rational, comparison shopping freak flag fly -- as much as I hate to say it, sometimes you *do* have to buy a brand to send a message. And the message here is, silly as it is, "I'm willing to buy the serious headset that everybody swears by." Even if it costs more and doesn't do as much as the other headset. Yeesh, there are some days I'm happy I'm not a marketing guy. :-(