Date: 27/4/2007

Time: 17:50 - 18:20 (PUT) & 18:20 - 18:50

Aircraft: Ikarus C42 - G-CDMS

Exercise: Ex 12, 13 & 17b

Had surgery on the 4th for some laporoscy, gallbladder removal and a hernia repair. Actually I was in for three potential hernias, but they could only find one. Obviously this has kept me off the road as well as out of the air for a while.

Today's single lesson is a bit of a test to see I am OK for it, given that it has been just over three weeks since the op.

The weather today is a bit hazy, but otherwise good. Timetable running a bit late, but after a DI were off to runway 03. Soon after clearing the end of the airstrip, Steve pulls the throttle shut for a PFL - I select a good field and do a reasonable approach and climb away just before what would have been an OK landing.

We return to the circuit and go round to a reasonable landing which I am quite happy with, although I am advised not to go so far over the trees on the base leg to avoid potential turbulence. Back to the start and another two circuits/landings that we are both happy with.

Now nearly half way through the lesson, Steve says it's time for him to get out!

Since my first solo, back in November, the weather has been awful. Along with illness I was kept out of the air 'til February and have been lucky to get any lessons at all and no opportunity for solo. So it's a bit of a relief to have another go, and in a way, feels like another first solo.

Without an instructor next to you, the C42 climbs out from the airfield at an impressive 1200 foot per minute and I am quickly up to the 800 foot circuit height before turning onto the crosswind leg. I remember the radio calls and downwind checks, turn base and soon kill the power into the glide. It all works out OK and I put it down reasonably close to the runway threshold and again I'm reasonably happy with it; only using about a third of the total length.

My confidence is buoyed up and I go on doing circuits that I am relatively happy with and it all feels good. Don't remember how many circuits, but soon it's ten to eight and the airfield is closed at eight, so I take the aircraft to the parking area and put it to bed - probably the first time that I've done this on my own too.

Steve has been watching with a radio, but hasn't had to use it. He only comments on one thing and says that I corrected it on the next circuit, so it seems I haven't been doing too bad! One of the other pilots even compliments me at the pub later when we are celebrating Steve's birthday.

I know condition have been great today, with a reasonable wind straight down the runway 03 and only a couple of other aircraft in the circuit, but I am really chuffed with today. I think that the high wind low hops that I have been doing recently have really helped. The only bad news is Steve is fully booked so I have to wait two weeks for my next lesson - lets just hope that I can do as well!

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