November 14, 2010

Welcome back! We’re half way through November and that means that Thanksgiving break is upon us. We have classes the rest of this week and Monday and Tuesday of next week, and then break begins. Until last week, I had plans to stay and possibly fly and build flight hours but my brother and his fiancé gave me a Southwest Gift Card, allowing me to fly home, without spending much money.

Tomorrow, November 15, is also registration day for sophomores. Even though this is my first year at Riddle, I earned 28 college credits for taking AP exams in high school, enough for the university to view me as a sophomore, which is to my benefit, since I get to pick classes sooner, meaning my schedule might look a little better. Oh, the benefits of being in college and getting to pick your class times. I changed my flight block so that beginning in the Spring Semester I will fly Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, rather than Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday. I really didn’t like having to wake up early on Saturday morning. One benefit I saw was that it was less busy, making it easier to taxi and just maneuver through the airspace.

Speaking of flying, I am coming up on my Pre-Solo. I have a flight or two this week, then, I have an oral where my instructor and I review a Pre-Solo Aeronautical Exam, making sure I understood everything. Then I have my Pre-Solo Check ride, which is where instead of flying with my instructor, I fly with a check pilot, who asks me to perform some maneuvers, like stalls, slow flight, steep turns, then asks me to do some traffic patterns to another airport, rather than Daytona Intl. If I pass, which I hope I do, I will be able to continue and solo the following module with my instructor. Basically what happens is that my instructor and I fly to an uncontrolled airport, meaning there is no control tower, we land, he hops out, and I fly a couple traffic patterns, then I come and pick him up, and we fly home. I am extremely excited and this is probably the one stepping stone, all pilots look forward to.

Also this couple weeks, many students and staff, including myself, got very upset to see the Discovery Shuttle launch get pushed back several times, until finally being delayed until I believe late this month. The push back was due to weather and mechanical difficulties, but we still were disappointed. The campus gets extremely excited when an event like this goes on while we are here. The university had planned on setting up a broadcast of the launch in one of the auditoriums and broadcasting the audio for the launch over the radio. Professors told us how most of them would either drive down to the Canaveral and watch or even stay here on campus, watch the broadcast in the auditorium, and as soon as it got so high, run outside and stare up into the sky and see it for yourself. It was a laugh for all of us, but it was extremely cool to know that we could see it from our dorm windows.

Other classes are going well but, because of Thanksgiving Break approaching, teachers have decided to get everything done before then, which I would rather because that means fewer things I have to focus on and prepare during break. I still have several tests before the break, an essay due, a team presentation to prepare, and a lot more, but I would rather get it over with.

On a side note, today, November 14, is my Residential Advisor, Fiona’s, birthday. My whole wing is extremely lucky to have such an amazing RA as her. I am very thankful that we have such a close and awesome relationship with her. I hope you guys get such a great RA, because they are there to help you and by being a good resident, you make their lives easier, more fun, and allow you to stay on their good side. So Happy Birthday Fiona! Well, that’s pretty much it and I won’t talk to you guys until after break, so I hope you guys have a great Thanksgiving. Over

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About Alex

**Minor:** Applied Meteorology **Career Goals:** To become a pilot for a major airline, hopefully one day Southwest Airlines. **Why I chose Embry-Riddle:** I was born in the United Kingdom and moved to the United States when I was six, traveling between the countries I became a frequent flier. Ever since walking into that cockpit when I was 5, I always dreamed about becoming an airline pilot. One day, I searched online for the best school to become a pilot. Result: Embry-Riddle.

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