Both my wife and I had a particularly stressful week last week. Long days at work, not quite getting done everything we needed to each day, not sleeping well at night, not feeling like we had much time together as a family. It all added up to a bit of extra frustration. Thursday night, late, after both children begrudgingly agreed to stay in bed, we found ourselves plopped on the sofa downstairs. It was at that point I blurted out, “Want to hear a crazy idea?”
I don’t remember exactly what my wife said, but it was something like, “Yes,” so I suggested we make an impromptu flight up to Orcas Island and stay overnight at the Rosario Resort, which is about half-way down from Eastsound (the town) along Eastsound (the eastern sound of water made by the coastline of Orcas Island).
We decided to make the decision in the morning so I’d have a chance to check the latest weather forecasts. Friday morning arrived, and after a detailed weather check, we decided to make the attempt. I’ve flown to Orcas Island a couple of times before, and I’d taken the family up once to Eastsound (the town) for a day trip. But this would be our first overnight there.
Continue reading Rosario Resort and Eastsound
Owning an airplane comes with some advantages. Given that it’s February, it’s that time of the year when I need to meet up with my CPA to work out the details of filing 2015 taxes. The trouble is my CPA lives in Portland. So earlier this week on Monday, I flew down to Portland in the morning, then flew back later in the afternoon.
This in an of itself is not particularly interesting. It’s a path I’ve flown a few times before. But this time was probably one of the strangest flights I’ve ever been on. Let’s start with the flight track, which as you can see is quite predictable and normal-looking:
Continue reading To Portland and Back Again
Ever since I first saw it, I’ve loved the movie Always, the last of the great 1980s movies from the Spielberg, Kennedy, Marshall production team of Amblin Entertainment. There’s a lot to love in this gem. You can’t go wrong with the likes of Richard Dreyfuss, Holly Hunter, John Goodman, and Audrey Hepburn. The story behind the story is almost as cute, campy, and compelling as the movie itself.
For me personally, Always may in part be why I wanted to become a pilot. The movie merged together flying awesome airplanes, mountains, and classic music. In the words of Al Yackey (Goodman):
What this place reminds me of is the war in Europe. The beer’s warm, the dance hall’s a Quonset, there’s B-26s outside, hotshot pilots inside, an airstrip in the woods. It’s England, man! Everything but Glenn Miller! Except we go to burning places and bomb ’em till they stop burning.
One of the joys of being a pilot with an airplane at my disposal is being able to fly my family on summer “air trip” vacations. We get to explore places we would otherwise never even consider driving to. Last year, we worked our way out as far as Kalispell, Montana. This year, we knew we wanted to get to Sandpoint, Idaho after a stop in Spokane, Washington. Since it’s a very short distance from Spokane to Sandpoint (by air), we had an opportunity to visit Libby, Montana, one of two primary locations where they shot Always.
Continue reading Always and Eventually