Saturday, December 22, 2007


Veni,Vidi,Vici--first spoken by Julius Caesar in 47 BC. Translation from Latin "I came, I saw, I conquered." This is how I feel today. I took the FAA Private Pilot Written Exam.

This quest started back in 1972, Dad purchased a 1946 Taylorcraft BC-12. He had been a pilot in the Royal Canadian Air Force in the late '50s. I guess once it gets into your blood, it never lets go. We would go flying. Going through school, I did very poorly in math, but I could navigate.

1978, took basic Aviation class in high school. Ended up moving to Northern California just after graduation. No chance to take the test.

1979, Took my first ground school class at Santa Rosa Community College. Passed the class. Took the test in the classroom on paper. Sent the results to Oklahoma City and waited about 6 weeks for their return. Missed passing by 3 points--Missed 20 questions out of a 60 question test. I was devastated. I had my girlfriend at the time help me study.

1981-1982 Started flying. made it to 38 hours (40 is the minimum) Got to my last dual cross country flight and my instructor told me it was time to take the written. I started college at the time and really started to get into my studies. College and Flying do not mix. Did take Ground School in college--don't quite remember why I did not take the test.

Fast forward to 2002: I decided to go back and try ground school again. College was finished and I was working. It was a bit complicated-I was diagnosed with Diabetes. I did not think I could pass the physical, but got a waiver. Finished Ground School in the Spring--went to take the test, however, my Dad fell, went into the hospital and died a few weeks later. Did not have the heart to proceed.

2005: I started back at it again. Same teacher and Class as 2002. Passed that class with an A. Put off taking the test for about a month and then the time stretched--Mom took a turn for the worse and I spent time going back and forth to Reno (every few months) to see her and give my sister a break. Unfortunately, she passed away that summer.

2007: Everybody else is healthy, so different college and teacher. This time, I decided to take the test. One week after the class, here I am. I was apprehensive--It was a tough test the first time I took it. However, technology changed everything. Now it is on a computer. It was so much simpler. Instead of the 2.5 hours allowed for it, I finished in 4o minutes. The proctor administering the test was surprised on how quickly I came back.

How did I do?--I missed 4 questions or 93% correct . I kicked its ASS!! I have finally beat this test after 28 years.

Now on to get the medical and back into the Air. I want to say thank you to all of you that have supported me on this quest.

This one is for you Dad.

No comments: