Today was a day of airplanes. Lots and lots of airplanes: that is what KenmoreAir is all about. KenmoreAir is located just a few miles north of my home. They are the vestiges of what I suspect is an Age of the Air that is now mostly regulated to the big guys, at least in the “civilized world.”
I did not expect to feel much taking these photographs other than to revel in the beauty of a well-crafted, well, craft. I spent an hour or so talking to a gentleman who had some 3,000 hours operating his once Cessna 206 alone. Three. Thousand. Hours. That is a lot of hours that he and his wife flew around the Pacific Northwest exploring. Living. And I envy them every one of those seconds.
More so, in getting my nose in those cockpits, as it were, awakened in me memories of a day when I gloried in taking to the sky with my father. It was not till I was 16 and heading down to Florida that I flew for the first time in a commercial jet, even though I had hundreds of hours in small craft. I grew up in the cockpit, first learning IFR (instrument flight rules) long before I learned the traditionally more basic VFR (visual flight rules). I was too young to see out the cockpit, but young enough to not be intimidated by the array of instruments. I recall flights which ended with me elbowing my dad to wake after having lined us up for final approach, never once thinking it odd that a ten-year-old had been operating an aircraft for hours unaided by an adult. My father and I would punch holes in the sky and eve took two weeks to head to Alaska from New York; we ended up stalled at Yellowstone Park after a week into the trip and realizing we were only half way there. So we punched more holes in the skies before returning home.
So there I was this afternoon recalling the feel of controls while mixing fuel till the engine begins to sputter and bringing it back from the edge to ensure optimal performance. I remember; optimal indeed. Thank you, KenmoreAir.