I am a pilot

Happy to report that from today I can call myself a certified pilot. A hang glider pilot for that matter. Shortly after my last hill flight last Friday, Dave, my instructor congratulated me saying I did it. It sounded like the sweetest word in the world. I had been waiting for a while to hear him say it and there I had it. My life changed forever.

After I passed the written test on Saturday morning, Pat Denevan handed me an unofficial rating card. I could not wait to ride down to Hollister for a whole afternoon of freedom – flying without waiting for my turn as a student. And what a freedom it was, added to some magical wind. I finished 23 hill flights under 4 hours, first 8 of them from the 40ft hill to warm up and rest from the 70ft one. I could make my landings quite a lot better by those back to back flights.

The weekend of fun did not end there. On Sunday, Pat setup a booth of Mission Soaring at the Berkeley annual street fair and we both showed up to promote this wonderful sport. Sales pitches and demo on a glider simulator – the day went by in a flash.

What a wonderful weekend. Can’t wait for Priti to get her hang one and practise with me. I will get to tow soon, as Pat says. Can’t wait for this weekend to begin.

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