…3 …2 …1 …Happy (Fiscal) New Year!

It’s been said that if God had meant for man to fly, He would have given him more money. Laws of aerodynamics notwithstanding, it’s well-known in the community that the primary force which holds aircraft aloft is not “lift” but rather “funding.” Even military flight training is not exempt from the grasp of the all-powerful bean counters.

So, I was quite lucky to get my fourth flight in on Wednesday. At least half of the squadron’s flights were cancelled. On Thursday, the only sorties were a section of two aircraft going out on a formation flight. I’m not sure if anyone flew on Friday. But Monday, I’m told, is a new “fiscal” year. And while this has no actual physical significance, it does mean that our squadron’s purse will be fat with flying hours to spend. Word on the street is “stand by.” Apparently there are a lot of instructors getting anxious to get more hours in the cockpit, and the training schedule is expected to intensify greatly.

I’ve got a few things left to do before I get back in the cockpit. I have three more simulator “flights” left in the Basic Instruments syllabus. The first one was last night (Friday) at 6:50. The Mrs. and I were both thrilled when we saw that on the schedule. Much more fun than the camping trip we had planned. But it went well for me. I followed my instructor’s advice with regard to instrument scan patterns, and it payed off. I nailed all of my maneuvers and exceeded course standards on everything we did. I guess I just felt like I’d better not be spending Friday night at work if I wasn’t going to do a good job.

The next two sims are scheduled for Monday. If I do the fourth on Tuesday, I could be back in the saddle by the end of this week. I’ll have three instrument flights (in the back seat with a big hood over me so I can’t see outside) before I get to go back to the Contact syllabus with my onwing. At the expected operational tempo, though, it might not take very long at all to get there.


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