A chance to fly… Mother’s Day weekend presented the perfect opportunity to fly back up to New York to be with family. My wife had driven up days earlier and the plan was for me to meet her on Saturday after work. Aviation is probably one of the few occupations where, after the work day is complete, you look forward to do much the same thing you did while working.
And so, after completing my final flight of the day in N64678, after completing our post flight briefing and seeing my student out, I once again returned to the flight line, completed my preflight of N8268V and climbed into my trusty Piper Saratoga. Everything appeared normal on the run up, and after receiving my IFR release from Patuxent Approach, I launched skyward. Due to some rain showers, I was soon climbing through a few wet clouds, then on top, climbing up toward Salisbury, then turned northward and, a few minutes later, was cruising above some absolutely beautiful white puffy clouds, across the Delaware on over southern New Jersey.
As I cruised back up to the New York area, I could not help reflect on how I had finally achieved my goal. To be able to live, breathe and experience aviation every day, to be able to make my passion my occupation. Most importantly, to be able to share that passion with our students. To introduce others to the world of aviation. As I gazed off to the right, Atlantic City could be seen between breaks in the clouds, slipping off the right wing. Then Philadelphia off the left wing, the McGuire Air Force Base directly below. Listening to the Philadelphia air traffic controllers working the inbound traffic to Philadelphia, making sure my track took me safely above the inbound Boeing and Airbus aircraft. Soon I was advised to contact New York and in what seemed like minutes later, started my decent into the New York area. Wheels touched down at Caldwell Airport, just west of New York City a short one hour and five minutes after I had departed Ocean City. As my propeller spun to a stop at the Airbound Aviation terminal building at Caldwell, I caught sight of my wife and daughter turning into a parking spot next to the terminal. How amazing aviation really is. How blessed to be a part of it.
With the airplane safety chocked and tied down, thanks to the great ramp personal at Airbound Aviation, I stepped out into the parking lot and started out of the driveway toward the busy highway beyond. One last look over my shoulder. A small thank you under my breath. How blessed I am to experience aviation. How blessed to share it with others.