Say Hello to February

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What’s with February!?!? First, I know many of you can hardly believe it is February already, but I’ve had a pretty long month, so I’m not surprised. I’m glad it’s finally here, actually!! Secondly, what is it with public-place decorators that makes them want to change from a nice, wintery (presumably the January) motif, to a tacky, overly-vibrant heart-overkill motif? Not that all hearts are tacky… let’s just say when I walked into the NCTI cafeteria, there was no question that the calendar had flipped.

On to more relevant news… We have been chugging through lots of new material. Flight plans, for one, and how to process them and send messages relating to them. Yesterday, we learned some more things about helping lost aircraft find their way and essentially “steering” them. It’s pretty neat, and to practice, we use this 70’s-era technology that is retro yet quite effective. All we have to work with is the bearing to the plane (in real life as well as here), so all we need is a 3 digit number display. We do a few simple calculations and visualizing from there. We have also learned how to deal with aircraft that fly without a radio – sometimes by choice (although why you would do that, I’ll never know) and sometimes because of an unanticipated failure. We call them NORDO (for “NO RaDiO”). Today, we started learning about emergency procedures. This chapter will be spread out over a few days, so we just started. I have a sim run later today, and I gather that there is going to be some NORDO, and some NOTAMs (NOTice to AirMen) probably due to broken equipment, and some flight planning. I’m looking forward to it; we haven’t been in the sim for a week! It was nice to have a bit of a break after the eval (the weekend), but we’re back into the swing of things now. It seems like we aren’t learning anything too intense, but in reality, I think we’re just more prepared for it, so it seems easier. Sort of easier. 🙂

The next few weeks are going to be exciting!! We have 3 more tests, but one is the radio operator’s licence, which I already have. The weather observing test will be tricky, since we have been learning codes for synoptics (special climatology and meteorology reports that only get done every 6 hours). It’s a bit like trying to learn a new language. All the weather conditions have to be converted to numeric codes, since it is a universal language. It’s very concise, and it’s a good thing that I used to make up codes with some of my cousins when I was younger – it has certainly helped prepare me for this!!! 🙂 If you saw synoptic codes, there is a good chance you might have a heart attack, stroke or seizure, so I’ll change to another topic.

Actually, there’s not much else to say!! The next eval is about 2 weeks away, which is hard to believe!! It feels like we just had one! (Which we did… hmm…) The next test is about 1 week away (weather obs) and the last test, aviation, is about a week and a half away. Oh, yes, Duane just told us that The List will not be available until next week, hopefully Monday. There’s a posting/opening that was posted internally first, and they have to wait to see if it gets filled (before going to us). Apparently, it’s a “prime spot,” but that’s all he would say!! He loves watching us squirm.

So, the suspense continues about where I might be when this is all over. But, I think I’ll just keep going one day at a time! You can’t really live more than one day at a time, anyway, right? Take care, everybody!

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