Be your own Helicopter

Posted on November 28, 2014

Be your own Helicopter

I’ve been flying Airplanes and Helicopters for a living for decades now.
I also did an aircraft maintenance course, and I am what they call an Airframe and Powerplant (A & P) Aircraft Maintenance Technician. The point of that anecdote, is not to tell you how great I am, but, on the contrary, to tell you how working as a Helicopter Pilot-Mechanic (on a Taiwanese Tuna Boat) slowed me down. A lot. How so?

A modern Helicopter can cost millions of Dollars. I fly a Bell 407, and behind me stands a team numbering hundreds of individuals. Those guys are specialists. They have spent whole careers focused on their area of expertise. They really know transmissions, or turbines, or electronics, or GPS systems. They are field mechanics, or logistics people, or finance guys, or customer liaison dudes. They worry about all sorts of stuff, and they have my back. And little moi, well, I am the lucky-lucky-lucky jester that gets to PLAY with the biggest, meanest toy you can imagine. Err, WORK, I mean. Having also worked as a mechanic, I see the results of my actions. I see, in my mind’s eye, a shaft spinning, cogs meshing, hot gases flowing. If I fly slightly out of balance in a turn, I wince, because I sense the stress and torque I’m putting on my poor baby’s tail boom. If my landing is a little firmer than I am used to, I feel bad, because I’m being rough on my baby. Heaven forbid that I ever, EVER, really broke it. By flying into something, or doing something really stupid. I’d die of shame. I would be letting the whole team down. All of them. All those hundreds of people, from design engineers on down, who pulled together just so little MOI could take to the skies. The tip of the spear.
Flying is a Privilege, not a Right.

Well, when I say “be your own Helicopter “, what I mean is something along the same lines:

There is a whole team behind you as well. Parents, family, educators. Colleagues, support staff. The Police and Firemen and Ambulance Drivers in your local community are on that team as well. Friends, lovers. There’s a LOT of people that have a vested interest in YOU. They may not know you personally, but their efforts have been indispensable to get you to where you are now.

Heaven forbid that you ever, EVER, really break your beautiful Helicopter. By flying into something, or doing something really stupid…

go back to list of possible Stepping Stones Across? Fly

go back to Index? Smile

Last edited by Francis Meyrick on January 7, 2015, 2:13 pm


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