Month: May 2013

First Fly-In

I had my first fly-in of the season this weekend.  I flew Mike and I to the Sexsmith Airport in Exeter on Sunday.  The weather was absolutely perfect for the hour and fifteen minute flight to the west:
It took me some serious studying to try and find the grass strip airport, but I spotted it when I was about five miles away.  There were already dozens of planes there:

I LOVE landing on grass:

I was at this airport last year to give a “motivational” type presentation.  I was really looking forward to seeing Tom from COPA 177 again.  We’ve kept in touch over email since then.  Look who was there to flag us to our parking spot – Tom!

We had to park way at the end of the other runway, which was kinda cool as we got to check out all of the other planes there:

I was shocked that I was the only one with a rubber chicken hanging off my pitot static tube.  Weird! 

I ran into quite a few folks I met when I was there giving the presentation.  It was nice to be recognized!  Mike and I grabbed some yummy breakfast while chatting with the fellow pilots.  Quite good!  I was hoping some other folks from our Recreational Aircraft Association would have flown in as well, but we didn’t see anyone.

After nomming, we wandered around and checked out some of the other planes:

Some folks were still coming in:

I got a couple pics with Tom, who gave me a little trivia – Exeter, Ontario is known for their white squirrels!

He assured me they were not albinos!

After saying farewell, Mike and I headed back to Vyctor.  As we taxied over to the runway, we waved farewell to Sexsmith:

We are going camping at the Pinery Provincial Park later this week, which ironically was less than a 10 minute flight away from Sexsmith.  We decided to fly over and check it out:

Kinda neat to see it from the air, knowing we would be going there a few days later.

It was a nice flight back to St. Catharines – still very clear.  Here we are, coming in to land:

Amazing day!  What a great way to start off the fly-in season!  There are many more to look forward to over the next few months.

Today’s symptoms: Felt pretty good today except for a fairly bad headache and some bad aches and pains in my arms, plus the dreaded MS hug.  Ugh!

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Awesome Weekend

As you may recall from my previous blog, someone said goodbye to me over the radio while I was leaving Hamilton Airspace.  He said I would find out who it was at work the next day.  Well, I had to go up front to see a taxpayer and when I came back to my desk, I saw this note:

Ah, the plot thickens!  It turns out it was a fellow pilot who works upstairs – she was on a flight with a friend (flight instructor and examiner) and he was doing the radio work while she flew.  She recognized my voice so he decided to play with my mind a tad.  Well done!  I would have never guessed!  Just so glad she was kind enough to end the mystery!

Had a great day on Saturday.  Mike and I went over to Buffalo to go to the Eastern Hills Mall.  We also had to pick up a package I ordered.  Before heading over, we decided to get breakkie at IHOP.  Donkey joined us:

Mike ordered these awesome red velvet pancakes:

Then we headed to the States.  The wait on the three main bridges was 1-2 hours.  Thank goodness for Nexus!  I think we had to wait about five minutes!

We visited a pet store while there and saw a pet for sale that I’ve never seen before (at least as a pet!)  Little prairie dogs:

We hit a liquidation store once back in Canada.  I saw this sign and instantly thought of my little mother:

Had another great day on Sunday.  I went over to Mike’s for dinner.  As usual, little Coco stared at me:

Here’s my view:

He’s so cute – all four of his kittahs are adorable.  Here’s little Blue trying to help himself to one of Mike’s ribs:

After dinner (which was awesome!), we headed back to my place, killed some time then out to the airport.  He’s never flown over fireworks before so I figured I’d give him the experience.  We took off just before 9:00pm and headed toward Welland.  There were tons of little private shows all over the place, but we wanted the big one.  We circled for over ten minutes and no big show.  We decided to head back to Port Dalhousie.  A few minutes after we got there, the fireworks in Welland started.  Ugh!  There wasn’t a big show in Port D, but still lots of smaller shows to keep us entertained.  Once back on the ground, we tied down little Vyctor for the night:

He’s happily back in the hangar now, and will probably stay there until the weekend.  I’m hoping to fly to Sexsmith Airport Sunday morning for a fly-in breakfast.  That is where I did a motivational talk/presentation for COPA Flight 177 last year.

Today’s symptoms:  I felt fairly decent now that I’m sleeping well.  Unfortunately this morning, I took a pill that I forgot I was only supposed to take at night.  I soon found out why – I was soooooo drowsy.  I can’t believe I made it through the whole day.  Oops!  Still experiencing a pretty bad headache and MS aches and pains in my forearms.

Great Day Off

It was my compressed day off today and the weather was perfect, so I’m sure you know what I did.  My little mother hasn’t flown with me since before Christmas.  We flew out to Brantford this morning for breakfast.  Unfortunately, it wasn’t the smoothest flight there, so Jan was a tad stressed.  At least breakkie made her feel a bit better:

The two cups of coffee helped too.  Plus we got to look at cute little Vyctor just outside:

Also got to see these beauties that were taking kids with vision and/or hearing issues to Ottawa:

Another one landed just as we left, and there was one more on the way.

Had such a neat experience in the bathroom at the airport, of all places!  Jan and I were just about to leave when a woman walked in and said “It is you!”  She said that she follows my blog religiously.  I was so flattered, I didn’t even ask her where she was from.  Duh!  I’m horrible with names, but I think she said Tracy.  If you’re reading this, I would love to hear from you!  Feel free to email me at murphage@sympatico.ca !

Had another interesting experience on the flight home.  I was just clearing the Hamilton control zone and I’m not sure if it was someone in the Tower or another pilot, but he said “Bye Elizabeth!”  What the heck???  After a brief pause, I asked who had said that.  He said that I would find out at the office tomorrow.  I’m so confused!  I have no clue who it was.  Kinda looking forward to finding out on Friday!

When we landed, we saw this cute coyote on the edge of the runway:

We went back to my place and Jan waxed the floor in my dining room – She’s awesome!  I made a pretty big batch of beef jerky.  It smells SO good in my apartment.  It’s been going for about four hours now.  Should be at least another three or so:

Today’s symptoms: Feeling pretty good.  Still dealing with a fairly bad headache, but more than tolerable.  My hands were a bit more shaky than normal.

Flight to Oshawa

Had an amazing weekend.  Mike and I were watching the weather all day, hoping the clouds would lift enough for us to fly to Oshawa to go to the Mandarin.  Fortunately, by 3:00 the clouds lifted up to about 2000′ and we were able to go.  We took off just after 3:00, as the restaurant didn’t open back up until 4:00.  It was an awesome hour long flight there.  We passed over the heart of Toronto:

Then headed Northish to Oshawa:

I was third to land – this was my first time at this airport.

We wandered over to the Madarin which was about a five minute walk.

Since it was Mother’s Day weekend, it was totally packed.  Still, we had some awesome noms:

Mike went all out on the yummy desserts:

Ironically, all of the women were given a carnation for Mother’s Day.  It had the MS logo on it as the Mandarin is the major sponsor of the Walk for MS.

Heading back to St. Catharines, the weather wasn’t as good.  The haze really rolled in:

We saw a neat boat in one of the harbours:

And saw the Orng medical helicopter and some other aircraft:

The haze and cloudage was pretty bad back in St. Catharines:

What an awesome day!

Had another great day on Sunday.  As it was Mother’s Day, Jan and I spent the day together.  We did some shopping at first, hitting Petcetera for their spend $100 and get $30 off deal.  Ended up getting 90 lbs of cat litter!  Then we went to Shoppers Drug Mart for our third $200 shopping spree – spend your points event.  We picked up $227 worth of stuff and it only cost me $27.  I have enough points for one more spree.

Back home, we heated up our yummy full turkey dinners I picked up at Antipastos.  We had them at Christmas too – very good.  So good, Mya wanted some too:

We had such a great day – what an awesome weekend!

Today’s symptoms: Very tired and drained today with a pretty bad headache.  Tons of MS aches and pains all over too.  Went home an hour early.

Krazy Kittahs

Not too much to report for this week.  I’m really hoping the weather is decent tomorrow as I’m going to fly Mike and I to Oshawa.  There is a Mandarin restaurant across the road from the airport.

This is going to be a short but very cute blog.  My kittahs are adorable.

Boo and Mya on the couch:

Abby being cute:

Boo had breakfast in bed:

I changed my shower curtain today and Pinky crawled into the the one to be washed:

Then she stuck her tongue out at me:

Little goobers.

Today’s symptoms: Feeling pretty decent.  Bad headache though.  Finally slept the last couple of nights.  I hope this is the end of my month long stint of insomnia.

Krazy Kittahs

Not too much to report for this week.  I’m really hoping the weather is decent tomorrow as I’m going to fly Mike and I to Oshawa.  There is a Mandarin restaurant across the road from the airport.

This is going to be a short but very cute blog.  My kittahs are adorable.

Boo and Mya on the couch:

Abby being cute:

Boo had breakfast in bed:

I changed my shower curtain today and Pinky crawled into the the one to be washed:

Then she stuck her tongue out at me:

Little goobers.

Today’s symptoms: Feeling pretty decent.  Bad headache though.  Finally slept the last couple of nights.  I hope this is the end of my month long stint of insomnia.

Plenty O’ Flying

I was able to go for three flights over the last few days.  I had Thursday off and someone I met in Waterloo flew to St. Catharines to do some aerobatics with me.  The weather was great – our previous flight was cancelled due to rain.  She came in a rental Katana from the Waterloo Flight Centre:

We went up and did loops, rolls, snap rolls and combos.  She loved it!  Nothing like having a totally happy passenger!

She texted me after she flew back to Waterloo and said that flight was quite boring and uneventful compared to our aerobatic one.

Had another perfect weather day on Saturday.  Mike and I flew out to the Brampton Airport for a tour of the Fisher Flying Products hangar.  They produce construction kits for folks to purchase and build one of their fourteen different types of homebuilt aircraft.  I set up the tour for our Recreational Aircraft Association group to attend.  We had three planes fly in plus a few cars.  In total, there were seventeen of us there.

Here we are listening to Paul speak about his awesome company:

Then outside to one of their demo planes, the Dakota Hawk:

Here’s a shot of the three of us who flew in:

We also spoke with the owner of Kitplane Builders (completion services) who is in the same hangar as Fisher Flying Products.  After that, we went over to the WW1 museum to check out the awesome planes:

I was starting to feel a little yucky, so we decided to head back.

Burlington Airpark:

And the Burlington Skyway:

And coming in to land back at St. Catharines:

Awesome day!  And had another one today.  It was the Walk for MS this morning.  Yet again, the weather was perfect.  I took off around 8:45 to do some aerobatics over the lake just north of the starting point of the St. Catharines Walk.  Once it started, I snapped some pics of the walkers before heading over to the other Walk sites:

Then over to the Walks in Welland and Niagara Falls:

I’m so happy they finally had great weather for the Walk.  It’s usually in April and almost always windy and rainy.

Just a note to thank everyone again who supported me for this cause!

Today’s symptoms:  Felt quite good all morning escept for a slight headache.  By the afternoon, I could tell a sinus infection was a’brewing – bad headache, pressure, fatigue.  Blah.