Now that the season is over, not only am I lax in updating my blog, we have been able to take a little time to get “out of Ignace”. We just retuned from a family wedding in Niagara Falls ON. We also had a little time to visit our youngest daughter, Jo, in the big city -Toronto.
We had a great time “down south”. While in Toronto I hooked up with an old college buddy. Many of my college classmates are airline captains, chief pilots and operations managers. I have to remind my self that I am not only an aircarrier President but also the chief outhouse hole digger. Funny how career paths suite the one taking the journey. Back to meeting Pete. My classmate Pete is now Senior Training Captain on the Airbus for Air Canada. He brought Karen and me into the Air Canada training center and let me fly the Airbus 320 simulator.
At first glance, it looks simpler than a Beaver but full motion and visuals makes it a very realistic and demanding experience. Notice the joy stick in my left hand to control the aircraft. That is all it is.
The Airbus is a very sophisticated aircraft. In fact it has all the latest technology. It is fly by wire and has a glass cockpit. Unlike in the Beaver you are more a systems manager than a stick and rudder pilot.
Karen performed admirably as my co-pilot. She handled the auto-pilot, landing gear and flaps. The Beaver has no auto-pilot, the landing gear is always down and secure, and the flaps are rather simple so I have no need for a co-pilot… most of the time.
Three landings didn’t make make me re-consider my career path. It was a lot of fun even if the Airbus doesn’t land as smoothly as the Beaver. But then 30 years landing the same aircraft can not be compared to a couple of “impressive” first attempts.
My regular office.