Tuesday, April 20, 2004

L-39 Moscow Memories

It's weird what I remember most about my L-39 flight in Moscow. I remember my two Italian jet flight customers standing on the ground and saying "Ciao!" as the canopy started to close on the cockpit. I remember saying to myself "please don't let me get sick in front of customers...please don't let me get sick in front of customers" over and over again as we taxied down the runway. In the air, I remember lots of Russian chatter over the radio and then August Reinbach's calm Russian voice asking "Do you feel gross?"

I wish I could say I pulled lots of g's and felt absolutely amazing when I landed, but I'm from Iowa. I think it's genetically impossible for me to tell a lie. I didn't do anything that required an extra big tip to the ground crew members who clean the jets, but I am pretty sure I turned a pale shade of green.

Would I do it all again? Most definitely. I will never forget the feeling of going "where few women have gone before". How many women can say they know what it's like to feel a g-suit start to work its magic? For a brief moment, my fingers were on the stick of a legendary jet trainer, controlling its movement through the air.

I'm lucky. Very lucky.