Why I Fly

“People always ask me why I fly….. I always have the same standard answers about how I’ve always loved it, and how as a kid I loved airplanes, etc….. I just wish I could somehow make them understand how this feels.
It’s 6:30 am…..there’s no one around….its just me and the airplane. The winds are calm, the temperature is cool and the sun is just beginning to peak over the horizon. I begin my takeoff roll and as soon as the wheels leave the pavement, any concerns or worries that I may have on the ground are instantly gone….its just me, the airplane, and a view that very few people get to experience. I live for mornings like this!  This is why I fly.”

This was a Facebook post that I wrote a while ago and it popped up in my timeline memories.  I look at the pictures and think to that morning….all the feelings come rushing back.  Yes, this is why I fly but there is more to it than that.  It is an accomplishment that few people in this world get to achieve.  I don’t say that to impress you but to impress upon you the sacrifices and the determination that it takes to accomplish this goal.  Only other pilots will understand what I mean.  I can sit here and try and explain the endless hours of studying, the sleepless nights trying to figure out how to calculate a flight plan manually, and the nervousness walking in to your first check ride with a huge pit at the bottom of your stomach……but words won’t do it justice.

Once you get your first taste of aviation, you will stop at almost nothing to be able to get back up in the air. It’s a feeling that takes over and the only thing that cures you is the lift of the wings taking you up into the sky.  During your training, you will have days that make you feel like you can accomplish anything in the entire world.  You will leave the airport feeling like Superman and nothing can get in your way….. and then…then there are those other days… The days that you leave feeling defeated.  Defeated in a such a way that sometimes makes you think, “What the hell am I doing?”  Defeated in a way where you think that your dreams of getting your private pilot licence, instrument or commercial rating may never come true.  We’re aviators though and as such, failure is not an option – it just isn’t in our DNA.  So we work a little harder, we practice a little more, and study a little extra..  Then we bounce back and when we do …we come back stronger and better than before!  We come out of the next flight nailing every flight maneuver and greasing every landing! We’re left feeling evening bigger and stronger than we ever did. Once again its a feeling that’s inexplicable.   I wish there was a way to bottle it up and give you even for just a few minutes the feeling that we as pilots get every time we move the throttle forward, pull the yoke back slightly, and the plane lifts off the ground.  If I could do that, I promise that everyone and I mean everyone would do whatever it took to also become pilots.

This is Why I Fly.

– Juan Concheiro
On The Upwind Flying Club

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