Sunday, July 24, 2011

Near Indianapolis

Got up at the crack of dawn to get the plane out before the semi with the cropduster's loads showed up and parked in front of the hangar. Checked weather, loaded airplane, waited for a storm to pass from southwest to southeast. Walked out to an airshow intended only for the corn, as a thrush was spraying a field just north of the airport.

Went further south to get behind storms, then rode the wind they were using to rumble across the land into Illinois. Three hours later, my fuel was low and my bladder sounding the amber overpressure alarm. I diverted to the second-nearest airport, as it had a runway into the wind and the nearest one did not.

Galesburg, IL, had half the ramp full of ag planes loading fuel and chemicals... but the other half the ramp was crowded with personal airplanes, many of which were beautiful, shiny, freshly washed and waxed. An RV, a round-engine Cessna 195, light-sport composite that looked like the cockpit still had the new airplane smell... I wondered as I tied my plane down just what I'd found.

Then I walked into the lobby, and found the weather computer niche overstuffed with pilots trying to find a way through the storms to Oshkosh, for EAA's greatest aviation show on earth. We chatted until the fueler was finished with an ag plane and could get to my plane. Then in the air again, until my GPS was nearly dead, I was on my third sectional for the day, and I was emptying the wing tanks.

Finally, I got near Indianapolis, at one of the smaller airports nearby, called in on the low-battery left on the handhold, and landed in the thick humid heat. After I taxied in, I took the nearest parking space... just past two T-6's that were tied down and swathed in covers. I don't know if they're headed to Oshkosh or back from the Peoria airshow, but it was quite the sight.

I'll be here a day or two, as Brigid of Home on the Range has been kind enough to let me crash at her place. Really, guns, good food, airplanes, a black lab to spoil (and get back here with that underwear!), a bit of good alcohol to cap the night... Life is awesome.

2 comments:

Old NFO said...

Enjoy Wing! I know you and Brigid will have a ball and Barkely will too!

Rev. Paul said...

Nearly home, and already back in the land of good friends, good food, and good times. Sounds like fun.