Here’s what’s been on our minds the past couple weeks:
1. Caleb had his first check ride in the 38 last Friday and passed with flying colors! A check ride is kind of like a mid-term. You go up with a special IP(instructor pilot) that only does check rides and they don’t do anything except add up every tiny thing you do wrong in the plane and every question you answer incorrectly about the components of the electrical system of the jet and fun things like that. It’s like golf; a low score is good. If you get a certain number of things wrong, or even one important thing wrong, you fail, or in UPT terms “hook” the ride. The better your check ride scores are, the better chance you have of getting the aircraft you want at assignment night (which, for us, is only three months and three days away but who’s counting? 😉 ). One check ride down, two to go.
2. Caleb taught me how to dive at the pool here! If you knew me when I was little, you’d realize what a big deal this is. I didn’t even learn to swim until I took adult lessons at the Y when I was 18 because I was terrified of water growing up. Diving headfirst into deep water seemed pretty unthinkable for many years, especially since some people break their necks and die or are quadriplegics for the rest of their life if something goes awry. This was also my concern about skiing but I did that the winter before last too. What a daredevil I am! Anyway, I can now dive pretty well off the side of the pool and even the diving board. 😀
3. We had some friends over for some grilled chicken, mashed potatoes, peas, and my “Spanish Salad” (romaine, garbanzo beans, and chopped carrots in a salt, oil, and vinegar dressing) last weekend. I also made chocolate cherry cupcakes, which is chocolate cake mix with a can of cherry pie filling poured on top. The laziest person in the world could make this dessert but it seems gourmet and is very tasty. We recently discovered that one of our friends here is familiar with the game “Nertz” aka “Pounce” to my family and similar to “Dutch Blitz” for Caleb’s family. If you’ve never played it’s basically a fast-paced game of group solitaire. So I played that with six competitive student pilots in their early twenties and you can guess who had the upper edge. We also played Apples to Apples and corn hole. A good time was had by all.
4. I’ve recently taken on “Taco Tuesdays” in Caleb’s squadron. Handed down to us by spouses before us, and spouses before them, Taco Tuesday serves as a fundraiser for whichever class is running it to offset the costs of the graduation banquet. Basically a few of us get together and cook about ten pounds of ground beef and take it over to the squadron in a crockpot along with tortillas, queso, salsa, cheese, lettuce, jalapenos, rice, black beans, sour cream, hot sauce, tortilla chips and brownies. Then we sit there for four hours and the students and IPs come through and pay a suggested donation and take two or three tacos or nachos or whatever combination they want and we talk to them. They absolutely love Taco Tuesday because the tacos are delicious and I think they like looking at people who aren’t wearing flight suits and don’t talk about flying. We love it because it’s a profitable and easy fundraiser and it’s fun to talk to them and get to know them, too.
|And here’s a picture I meant to put up a while ago of my dad and me with Kayla-poo from my last trip home.|