MY FIRST SOLO FLIGHT

The last weeks have been busy with flights and preparations for my first progress checks, refreshing theoretical knowledge, and chair flying my maneuvers. I passed both my phase 1 and my phase 2 check and that means I got cleared to do my first solo flight Saturday morning.

The morning was a bit cloudy, but around noon it cleared up and we could go flying. I had two laps in the pattern with my instructor before I was left alone.

I was super nervous at first when my instructor jumped out and wished me good luck. But once I started rolling everything was perfectly fine. A crazy feeling and a lifetime experience taking off all alone. An unforgettable moment.

Three laps in the pattern with full-stop landings went fast and I really look forward to going for my solo navigation flights gradually.

Yellow is now my favorite color and this is my spirit aircraft. N24522 aka Bumblebee holding my hand on my first flight alone.

In between flights, I am enjoying what the Texas weather has to offer and life on the other side is pretty good nowadays. I feel privileged to be here.

THE START OF SOMETHING GOOD

After Texas recovering from the winter storm, I have finally had my first flights. So much fun and I guess it will be even more fun further along the way. The old Cessnas is so far treating me well.

Flying twice a day can be challenging and the learning curve is pretty steep. No doubt the next couple of months will be busy. It is all about trying to make the most out of the bad weather days, a combination of studying and exploring the state.

And so the adventure begins. Excited for the coming weeks with lots of VFR flying.

WINTER STORM AND FAA MEDICAL

My first week here in Texas has been quite interesting. Just a few days after we arrived Texas got snow and freezing temperatures. Which resulted in a complete chaos, Texans for sure does not know how to handle this kind of weather.

The power has been on and off for days, WiFi has been out, no available Ubers, grocery stores and restaurant has been closed and the list goes on. Actually, getting food has been the main challenge these days. But finally, the sun is out, the school is open and the snow has melted real quick.

Today we had a check up at the doctor to get our FAA medicals done. All good and delicious dounts on the way back. We have also started our first phase brief, which means we are a few steps closer to get up in the air.

KDTO.

THIRD CAA SITTING

Tuesday I finished my third sitting and four more CAA exams are passed. Exhausted, relieved, and happy with my own performance. It feels good, even though I have the two remaining ones in mind. Now it is time to work harder than ever to pass those as well. I know I will find it difficult, but I also know I can do it.

The school is currently suffering huge capacity issues, which means that I will not be scheduled for flight lessons any time soon. Fortunately, I have got a part-time job, which was perfect timing right now. So besides exam preparations, I have plenty of time to work.

This fall turned out to be a bit different than expected, but one day at a time.

END OF AN ERA

I have officially made it through ground school. Today was the last day of our ATPL classes. Aircraft General Knowledge, Performance, and Instrumentation are all done. In total 14 subjects are covered, and only some CAA exams left. Almost exactly one year since the first day at the academy.

The next CAA sitting will take place in September and should have been my last sitting. Regrettably, since I failed two exams during my very first sitting, I will use an extra sitting to re-do those. Anyhow, I will first focus on doing my best for AGK, PERF, OPS, and INST this time. It is a time for every purpose, I guess.

One year with a full-time theory schedule has been pretty exhausting and time-consuming. Still some time left before my exams, so I will not have to rush any preparations yet. First of all, I will enjoy some well deserved days off.

Tomorrow I will head to my second home, Gdansk. It has already been 7 months since last time, the pandemic combined with classes has made the commute a little fancy. Lucky to finally be able to go.

I am excited and very ready to continue this journey and learn how to fly for real. Fingers crossed for the weather this fall, and no more pandemics, please.

HANGAR DAY

During the first week with AGK, we have studied landing gear, piston engines, airframes, hydraulics etc., which was a perfect opportunity to get to visit the hangar.

Friday we got a tour to take a closer look at the different parts. Very helpful to see real-life examples of all the small details we are taught in class. It fascinates me to learn about how everything is connected and that nothing is left to chance. A fun and a convenient day at school.

The coming week will be busy as it is already time for the first progress tests for this subject. Feels good to be back in the classroom. The final stage of theory lessons before it is time to fly.

TWO MONTHS LATER

Hello Sandefjord, it has been a while!

Little did I know when I packed my suitcase and flew over to mama on the 13th of March. This whole situation lasted a little longer than expected and it has already been two months since I left Sandefjord.

Norway is basically up and running again and hopefully, my school is soon to be as well. At least we have finally got confirmed our CAA exam dates. So in three weeks, I will sit for my block 2 exams originally planned in March. I cannot wait to be done and to be able to continue with the remaining subjects. Until then, exam preparations will be the main factor on my to-do list.

Happy about the time I got to spend with family but also very happy about being back to my own routines. Early mornings alone is quite underrated. Also, the May weather and the brighter evenings makes life a little easier.

Ready for action, ciao!

CONTINUED DISTANCE LEARNING

Easter is history and it is time to get back to business again.

The schools are slowly opening again here in Norway, but mostly for the youngest children. My flight school is apparently not one of them. It is hard to keep the required social distance in our classrooms, even harder in the aircraft and simulators, so we will not be able to get back yet. So far no ground school nor flight training.

In the meantime, we are making the most of it and will continue our distance learning for the coming weeks. Moving on to Aircraft General Knowledge and firstly, we will cover Electrics. Excited for the new subject, I think I will enjoy this one!

Hopefully we are slowly on our way back to normal now.

CORONAVIRUS INFLUENCING PILOT STUDENTS

The Government has decided that Norway is in lockdown until after Easter (at least). This brings a lot of challenges for my flight school with regard to flight operations and ground school. Although, I feel like one of the lucky ones for currently having theory only. I can study and do my tasks at home.

DISTANCE LEARNING
Since my class was not able to sit for our CAA exams this time, we have proceeded with the lessons as per scheduled originally. Due to the virus outbreak, we are not allowed to physically go to school, and instead, we have started the new semester with distance learning.

We are following our instructors’ lessons through video presentations and we are given different tasks to finish for due times. The progress tests also continue as before but from home. A new situation both for students and instructors, but I think it is solved in a convenient manner.

On the other hand, I am lucky that I am a student right now compared with all airline employees laid off these days. The good news is, for each day passing, we are one day closer to get our lives back to normal. Stay home and take care ❤️

MEDICAL REVALIDATION

One year has passed since my initial medical examination and that means it is time to revalidate the certificate. I was supposed to have my medical check in Tønsberg, but as this COVID-19 situation appeared, I fortunately got a last-minute appointment here in Sandnes.

I started with filling out a standard form followed by blood and urine samples, balance exercises, eyesight/vision tests, blood pressure, weight and height. Pretty much a simplified version of the initial examination. I got some updated allergy medicines as well, so now I am prepared for spring and summer.

The check took about 1 hour and everything was fine. 3100 NOK poorer, good to go and certificate valid for one more year.