Slow-Falling Rain

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We had some slow-falling rain yesterday. It sounds so much better than snow, doesn’t it? 🙂 Besides, I am not sure if it was all snow. Some of it might have been snow grains or snow pellets! And it was definitely mixed with some rain, but not drizzle, and thankfully no ice pellets, freezing rain or freezing drizzle. I think I officially know way too much about precipitation!!!

It’s been a busy, busy week, but so far, it has gone well. We are not done yet; we still have a simulator run this evening (started already), but I have several hours before I go in. Yesterday, we had what’s called a Progress Check – it is like a pre-test, to see how you are doing and how they mark the evaluation. The ‘eval’ is on Monday, and I am very, very glad that I am not first on the list. The list (order of runs) changes every day, and currently I am at the very bottom. On Monday, I’ll be second-last. This means that I had to go into the sim rather late last night (11 pm), which is a little tiring, but despite that, I did okay! I felt like I pretty much had the situation under control, and although I am sure I did not say everything right, I did not do anything too awful either, so of that I am very grateful!!! I don’t know how I did yet, as the run is taped and the instructor reviews the tape before giving a final mark. I’ll find out later this afternoon. But I’m cool about it. No worries. No, my stomach is not turning. Well, maybe a little. It must have been the meat at lunch… 😉

We also had a big test this week. It was our aviation knowledge exam. I can’t remember if I mentioned it already… anyhow, there was a pile 4-inches-thick of paper to study, and it was pretty detailed stuff. Most of us started seriously studying and making cue cards a week before the test. There is just NO way you can cram at the last minute for a test covering that much material. Plus, a lot of it is numbers, distances, frequencies and stuff like that to memorize. Anyhow, we had the test yesterday and got the results at the end of the day – I passed! Actually, I did really well, so I am glad that all the studying paid off! 🙂 I have quite a collection of cue cards now… anyone want to bet they have more!? I should mention that although I got the highest mark in the class on the test, I do not have the highest pile of cue cards (although I’d say I’m in the top 5)!

Did I tell you about the sim run on Wednesday? It was completely wild. We had to ‘ensure the safe and efficient movement’ of 9 aircraft in 30 minutes. And each one needs several radio calls, to establish where they are, what they are planning on doing, if they are going to be interfering with anyone else… There was hardly any time that I was not talking to or listening to an aircraft (which we abbreviate a/c). I think there were about 6 that I was keeping track of at any one time. I got a bit ‘flapped’ (a word I use to describe being a bit flustered, but not losing it, but feeling behind the 8-ball, slightly frazzled, you get the picture). And so, I made some mistakes, including some deviations from the standard phraseology (sorry, I don’t remember any of the lines, but I’m sure they were pretty funny). Yesterday’s run was quite a bit better, though. It just didn’t seem as rushed, and I felt like I had a very good picture of where everyone was, who they were (call signs), what they were doing, where they were going, all that jazz. We had 10 a/c in about 35 minutes, so it’s not like there was a lot of extra time, but I just felt much more in control. Even though I’m not a controller, oh, no. I do not tell a/c what to do. Our job is to make sure everyone knows what everyone else is doing (especially if they are going to be close to each other) and if two guys are going to hit, I just ask them nicely (without saying please or thank you) to alter their course. Sometimes, they even volunteer to change course, so we don’t need to ask…

Anyhow, that’s been my week! Hope you have all had good weeks, too! Take care, everybody! 🙂

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