19 July 2011 | Denver and Lousiville
Where are we? What's happening? Are we back at work? In training? Trying to adapt to the fast-paced airline world and all the inherent changes that time and the economy have brought? Or have we given up on the real world and slunk back to the sea on a small flimsy raft with a hand-held radio and a few dozen heads of cabbage? This blurb will attempt to answer these, and other unasked questions.
I'm in Denver, Colorado, finishing up the last week of my recurrent training on the B-747, and should be home Saturday. Allan arrived in Louisville, Kentucky yesterday and will be in his recurrent training on the B-757/767 until mid-August. We have yet to see any paychecks but are confident that soon enough, actual cash dollars will be deposited into our account and our re-employment will be a reality.
My training has been great fun. I have some wonderful friends here in Denver, Mike and Sallie, who have a delightful home (Sallie is a talented designer) and have opened their guest room to me as backup to the hotel. I rented a microscopic car for a very good price, so mobility is easy. My plan was to stay at the hotel during the week and enjoy some "home-away-from-home" time at Mike and Sallie's on the weekends, but they've made things so tempting here at what Mike calls "The Mouse House" and what I call (since it's gargantuan rebuild) "The Mouse That Roared House" that I've opted to out-stay my welcome. Tomorrow is my day off, and I'm heading north to visit some former Albuquerque friends who moved to Denver a few years back to join the airline world.
Denver is experiencing an unusual monsoon season this summer, with torrential rains falling almost every afternoon, making things quite exciting for someone used to the stable weather patterns of So Cal. Everything is lush and green -- it's like buckets of Miracle Gro are falling from the sky.
Getting back in the swing of things hasn't been as hard as I thought, although I may be speaking too soon: the big test comes this week, as I finish the last 2 days of simulator training and then have my check ride on Saturday. After that, a trip or two with a Captain who is qualified to do "line checks," and I'm released to the wilds of the sky.
My schedule in August includes a few trips to Sydney, Australia. I'm excited to see our friends Behan and Jamie on s/v Totem, who, with their 3 fabulous kids, are snugged into Camarray Marina in North Sydney for a year or two, building up the cruising kitty so they can continue on their world adventure. We get regular emails from our friends on Paikea Mist and Serenity, who are both in Fiji, as well as Steve and Trish on Curious, who are at the top of Australia getting ready to launch on the Indonesia Rally with a bunch of other boats. It's exciting to keep up with our friends as they continue cruising, although we of course feel hefty pangs of envy. Nonetheless, we'll never forget the 10,000 miles of South Pacific that was our home for 18 months, and having done it, it's easier to feel we're right there with our friends in those azure anchorages, diving with colorful fish and sea turtles, sipping cold drinks at sunset as the boat gently rocks at anchor .... argh, this is harder than I thought ... wanna go back ... no - get a grip - focus, focus ... must ... pay ... off ... loan ...