I am endorsed to solo!!!

*happy dance*

My day went something like this...

Work in the office, leave at 2pm for scheduled flight. I flew out with Stuart, my usual CFI, to do landings, slow flight and emergency landing procedures. We did touch-and-goes at Caddo Mills on 17. That was a fun little runway space. I say space because there's another adjacent runway and a road all making a triangle. It's hardly an airport. My landings were great, my maneuvers were good, and I was on my game in every way. Back at the hangar, I was hoping he would endorse me right there. uh, no. He couldn't (apparently either he's too new of a CFI at this school or... I don't know... that's my only guess) so I turned to Patrick, the owner/manager guy.

Winds will be high tomorrow.
He's out Friday through the weekend.
We don't know the weather for next week yet.

Rather than play it nice and say "oh whenever", or get all bitchy about not knowing Stuart would not be able to endorse me, I jumped in with an enthusiastic "How about right now!?"

"Take 30 minutes and we can do that."

So I apologize to Rusty on the phone that I'm messing up the evening routine, speed through town, take the kids from daycare to home, speed back to the hangar and begin preflighting. At this point, the sun is hanging low and we have a little more than an hour of light. Patrick dumps in some fuel then we shove off with haste. < /speed reading>

My earlier flight was on runway 15 at ADS (17 at Caddo) but the winds changed within the hour so we taxied to 33. Take off was great. Navigation to Mesquite airport was good. I did 4 touch-and-goes.

My landings were all perfect. I got nothing but praise on those from both instructors. My first pattern at Mesquite with Patrick was a bit sloppy (was I nervous, excited, distracted?) but my other patterns were all fine and the last was mah-velous!

In flight as we departed back towards Addison, Patrick signed my logbook & medical certificate endorsing me to fly solo. Normally he would ask me to drop him off, I'd fly around then we'd fly back. But the sun was dropping fast so he stayed in the passenger seat the whole time.

Friday I will go out with Stuart, fly him to Mesquite, he'll jump out and talk to me from the ground while I do a few touch-and-goes. Then he'll cut my shirt. :-)

What does this mean for me?

I can finally get on with my ultimate goal of a pilot's license. I need to do a few cross-country trips solo, I need to practice some maneuvers solo and I need to pass my written exam with the FAA. And flying solo is cheaper than with an instructor so in theory I can fly more frequently.

Free at last!!

(Pictured above: my brand new paper airplane socks that I wore all day with hopes they would be good luck.)

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