Thursday, December 15, 2011

A Tale of 2 Remotes...

So this tale begins a week and a half ago when I told John the remotes for the garage weren't working well. Instead of listening to me ( I told you they weren't working!) he checks them with some kind of imaginary battery tester. Which told him they were good...why listen to me right? I just have to use them every day.....

Flash forward a few days and he's gone...I hit the remote no less than 30 times before it finally opens the garage door...super.....So I do something with that remote (we'll get to that in a minute). Grab the spare remote off the table and start using that...it now has to bounce between the car and the truck.

Flash forward to yesterday...by this time I have well and truly lost remote 1....and have pretty much lost remote 2 as it wasn't working that well either. John and I go run about a million errands, get truck oil changed, get car oil changed, last minute Christmas shopping on and on and on....by the time we get home with both cars...I have lost both remotes for sure. At which point my husband notices:

Him: Where are the remotes?
Me: Don't know don't care...I'll just use the house key the remotes aren't working anyway.
Him: But I need to find them to fix them
Me: I tried to get you to fix them last week I don't know where they are anymore....


In the mean time my husband makes the comment when we had found 1 remote but the other was still hiding.....


Him: I am not replacing the batteries in only one remote we need to find the second one.
Me: Fine I will do it when you leave
Him: No you won't I'll take it with me so you can't use it (really?)
Me: Ok I'll go buy another one
Him: They are expensive! And you don't know how to program it.
Me: True but I'm sure our neighbor/friend does.
Him: I'll tell him not to help you!
Me: Go right ahead you'll be gone and he'll help me anyway.


After a few minutes of this I have moved on to bigger and better things like laundry...not caring about the remote, as I have a back up plan (read: buy a new remote).
It takes about 30min to find the last elusive remote...remote 1 happened to be in my coat pocket (which I *thought* I already checked) I have no idea how it got there..........After we (well really John I had given up at that point) find them both the following conversation

Him: You WILL leave one in the truck and one in the car
Me: Hysterically laughing trying to gasp out: Your gone most of the time good luck with that!

Monday, December 12, 2011

New Years or Not...

http://www.despair.com/obstacles.html

I love this website and their posters they are funny as hell. The quote from this one seems to be how our New Years Eve is going to go...

So we have a few options for new years

1) I fly from ORD to FLL to spend New Years with John....
2) I fly from ABQ to FLL to spend New Years with John...
3) Stay in ORD for New Years
4) Stay in ABQ for New Years

Option 1&2 are both expensive...(now if this was the good ole days of aviation I could just happily non-rev down there, but I'd rather chew my hand off..)
Option 3 isn't expensive per se but requires me to take more time off from work....
Option 4 sucks the most but makes the most sense..of course...I can work and have a fantastic New Years by myself...

Oh the fabulous life of a pilot's wife right?

Sunday, December 4, 2011

American and Bankruptcy


So it's a little lopsided, but it's one of 2 AMR posters we have hanging up. Horses and airplanes, what could be better?


So first off let me say my heart goes out to all who work at American and Eagle. Having never been through one (bankruptcy) I am by no means an expert, and having a pilot who doesn't work at either, I don't feel qualified to say much of anything other than Arpey and (some) other airline ceo's have a special place in hell. One of the blogs I follow is written by an MD-80 driver who works at AMR here is his blog on the bankruptcy. Please head over here

Saturday, December 3, 2011

My Husband, The Fixer Part II

The hot tub was the culprit this time, you can see small icicles still hanging from the deck

So I thought I could get away with only one thing happening while he was gone remember the tank heaters?

I am a good wife (most the time :) and since last night was John's first night in his new crashpad and he had only his phone for an alarm clock I told him I would wake up just to call him and make sure he was awake. Perhaps this is what I get for being a good wife. So I dutifully set my phone alarm for 2am (4am in FLL) and promptly pass out on the couch, also bear in mind I had to work again this morning. My alarm goes off and I grab for the phone....turn the alarm off... call John to make sure he is awake, which he is. Then I have to put the dogs out, because now that I'm kind of awake they think it's time to play! Yea! We do the dog shuffle, and I head to the bed....

I walk into the bedroom and I am met by a peculiar noise, something like a cross between a machine gun and a type writer. AWESOME! The only thing that could make this god awful noise can be our hot tub which is located directly outside our bedroom door. I stagger over to the door, swearing profusely while the dogs promptly fall asleep, as the noise doesn't bother them they won't have to fix it. Open the door, the noise gets louder and I confirm it's coming from the hot tub. Really where else would it be coming from at 2am, but someplace outside in the snow?

Again since I am having SO much FUN I call my husband, after all I know he's awake. This conversation was a little less civil than the one I had about the tank heaters at 6am, after all I was barely awake and had anticipated going back to sleep. The conversation went something like this:

Me: Your F**ING hot tub is making machine gun noises
Him: What?
Me: Are you F**ING deaf your hot tub is dying what do you want me to do? can I unplug it?
Him: No, you have to go downstairs and flip the circuit, then you have to drain it.
Me: What? I'll flip the circuit but can't you do this Monday???
Him: No it needs to be done now (again its 2am and I have to get up to work in the morning) other wise it will freeze blah blah blah, or something I had stopped listening to him at that point

So anyway like a good wife I traipse downstairs turn the damn thing off go upstairs where I then need directions on how to drain it.

Him: You need a knife
Me: What? Why? I can't kill you over the phone
Him: Haha you need it to turn the lock to open the door to get to the drain
Me:What? I'm sorry it's 2AM!!
Him: It's not hard
Me: Yes it is I can't see it, and I have flip flops on in 2-3inches of snow I'm freezing why can't you ever be home when shi* like this happens?

I finally find the lock open it, then turn the valve to drain it......

By the time I fall back asleep it's 3am....Sweet......

I guess only time will tell if there will be a Part III in this saga!

Friday, December 2, 2011

My Husband, The Fixer.

So if I hadn't worked ALL day (by all day I mean 1 job from 7:30am to 12:30 and 2nd job from 2-6) I would have posted a wonderful picture of all the snow we have gotten....but that will have to wait until it's light out.

I've felt kinda like crap since Wednesday afternoon, thankfully I didn't have to work Thursday, I'm thinking flu? Anyway I get up as LATE as possible today and feel ok but exhausted because I've been sick. I stagger outside to go feed the horses and it's a balm 14 with the wind chill. As I trip into the barn I discover that the lights are out...WIN! Because this also means that the water tank heaters are out as they are on the same circuit. Sure enough I stumble over there in the dark (after all it's 6am) being chased by hungry horses to discover the amount of ice on the tanks could easily hold the civic....and there frozen, in the tanks, the water heaters...the universe is laughing at me at 6am.

So I go inside to flip the circuit but decide that my husband (who is in sunny FLL) should share in the early morning fun. So I call him mostly to complain. I tell him (again!) that the circuit has been thrown....(this happens often last time I was hoping he would fix it...either run another extension cord so the load wasn't as high or something...nope....) his answer: unplug the one extension cord and plug it into a different outlet he suggests one on the outside of the garage I know where it is.....so happens this is the outlet he replaced the other week.....I plug it in and immediately there are some pretty sparks then nothing...ohhh and it tripped too...unplug it reset it (since this one runs our hot water heater and I would like to take a hot shower if I ever get it fixed, also yes the person who built our house should be shot...the hot water heater is on an outside gfi? WTF?).

My husband the fixer immediately states it is either
(a) the tank heater gone bad or
(b) the extension cord also bad.
And that he will "fix" it when he gets home Monday, after all one tank heater is working.....really??? Monday?? All the bad weather is going to be gone then what good will that do me?

At this point I momentarily give up I need to get ready for work, and one of the tank heaters IS working. Since I had the truck plugged in overnight I unplug the truck when I get ready to leave and plug in the tank heater to that outlet.....TA_DA!!! She lives!!!! Crisis averted! One less thing for me to worry about!

Quote of the Week:

"I can fix it on Monday"

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Perks of being a Pilot's Wife?


On one of the pilot's wives websites I occasionally haunt the question was posed: "What is the best thing about being a pilot's wife?" Too be honest I read it and laughed, thinking there is a perk of this? Oh wait the perk must be that we are forced to try and pick his vacation week(s) a year in a advance, or maybe the fact that he's not home for holidays, birthdays, anniversaries, oh and his schedule changes month to month so that makes it impossible to plan anything! Not to be to negative or anything, shockingly I have been accused of that :) Other than the fact that it's a job and keeps us comfortable (after first year pay in which he could work at Taco Bell and make more), perks? what perks?

Yes, he can sometimes swing it so he has 5 or so days off in a row which turns into 3-4 days at home.

Yes, sometimes I'm happy he's leaving because he occasionally drives me crazy! But we spent 24/7 together for a few years while he was having knee and back surgery. I have found he drives me MORE crazy when he's home for 3 days, changes my routine, moves my stuff, then leaves.

Yes, we get to non-rev.....please remember this post
So it is a perk but really not as great as everyone would think.

I think the BEST thing about this career (and being a pilot's wife) is that my husband LOVES his job. Absolutely LOVES it. Which isn't something most people (or even me) can say. He wouldn't trade his job for anything. So I think that's the best "perk" of being a pilot's wife!

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Holidays and the Pilot Schedule

So I love the holiday season; starting with Halloween --> Thanksgiving--> Christmas. What I don't love however is John working for an airline that time of year. The biggest reason for this is planning, something the airlines love and hate to do. What you want vacation? Well you need to plan that a YEAR in advance, but wait you want to know when you are working next month....oh we won't tell you that until the middle/end of the month before!

It's super frustrating...take for instance Christmas, the schedule for December was supposed to come out on the 18th, with trip trades starting the 20th. Now though the computer dumped the bids so the schedule came out on the 20th with trip trades on the 23rd. This makes it really hard to plan, as we are going to Chicago. Since we are going home (Chicago) everyone wants to know what/when/where were going to be there, no one quite understands that we don't know yet. I understand from their perspective everyone is crazy busy and wants to make plans...so do I!! But alas that isn't in the cards as the wife of a pilot.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Road Trip Pictures!!




So over the past 2 weeks we have been on a road trip of sorts! John changed bases and we were driving his car cross country to his new base. So the first night we stayed in Dallas and ate at Bass Pro which was awesome! Plus we got a great crew rate hotel near the airport :)


I think this pic was taken in Mississippi? We were going to stay the second night in Mobile AL but just ended up eating dinner there instead!


So we made it to John's parent's house in FL for the third night. This was my awesome wine find at a local Russian store, very yummy!



Since we were in FL we could not possible pass up the opportunity to take a drive up to Disney on John's days off. It was the International Food and Wine Festival at Epcot, and also Christmas time! Food and Wine Festival was awesome (how many times can I use that word in this blog? but it was!) They had all the normal countries in Epcot then they had booths from other countries ranging from South Korea, to South Africa, to Sweden, all had little samples of local food and wine/beer.



Picture is kind of bad but you can see John with his Christmas hat on in front of the Food and Wine Festival sign at the entrance to Epcot. Along with a cruise boat and of course an airplane.



So we caved into the Christmas spirit (if you can't be happy at Disney I don't know where you can be happy!) and bought matching hats this is us in "Germany" so far it's the closest I've come to actually going to Germany unless you count a 4 hour layover in Dusseldorf!


So we decided since we were already there to fork over the extra money to go to "Mickey's Very Merry Christmas Party." It wasn't cheap (nothing in mouse world is) but I was SOOO Happy we went! You had to buy a separate ticket, and at 7 pm they threw the "normal" guests out and we literally had the part to ourselves! They had the Christmas parade at 2 separate times so we decided to go to the later one, and while the first one was going we went on almost every ride in the park and walked on to them, it was amazing! The also actually had "snow" on mainstreet, it was some kind of bubble/soap mix but it was pretty cool!


Train station at night at Disney...notice no people in it, we were almost the last people out of the park!


I loved the Castle at night with the Christmas lights on it, so pretty!



While we were there we stayed at Disney's Boardwalk which was (again) Awesome! It was pretty $$ but we had decided this was our Christmas present to each other. The best thing about the Boardwalk (besides being the Boardwalk) was the location, there is a back entrance to Epcot that is a 5min walk from there it was perfect!



And of course we ended our trip back at the new base....not to bad a scenery eh?

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Happy Birthday Flop!



So we are on vacation and it's a pain to post new blogs on the little computer...but Floppers birthday is October 31 (he's 4ish) and this is my favorite picture of the Flop. It wasn't taken on his birthday but I think he looks like a king!!

Friday, October 28, 2011

Saddlebreds!!


This one looks like Hokus....in an alternate universe!

I was SO excited to find that the (original) weekend we were going to Jimmy Buffett there was a Saddlebred show that weekend.

Let me back up a little here and explain......we bought these tickets 2 months or so in advance, as Jimmy was going to be in LAS 2 weekends in a row, we picked a weekend and bought tickets. Flash forward to about 3 weeks before the concert and John ends up with a check ride the morning after the concert at 5:40am. Sooo we decide the prudent thing to do would be to buy tickets for the weekend before (even though this cost an enormous amount of money, better than screwing up due to lack of sleep and having no job right?) so he could go and not worry about staying up late. That's what we did and it worked well....then he decided that we should go the next weekend (after all we still had the tickets, and I think he wanted to see if I actually would kick it of a heart attack after non-reving to LAS 3 weekends in a row) and that we would leave the concert early, which we did and it worked fine. But the day of the concert I was flying solo as he got called on a trip, at which point I found the Saddlebred Show!!!




This has to be my favorite horse of the show!

When I first started taking riding lessons 20 some years ago (gasp am I really that old??!) I started learning on Saddlebreds, which I rode and showed through college. In fact when I bought Neeko (our reject TB) I was also tossing up the idea of getting a Saddlebred. I love these horses, and I love the people that love these horses. They are a great group of people, and of course the horses have great personalities! Sadly I learned that New Mexico isn't exactly Saddlebred Mecca.....at all. I actually dragged John to the state fair when we first moved here because they had a "Saddlebred Show." Not so much....one horse in every class...the same horse....Saddlbred's it seems are not popular here. So it's been a good long time since I have been to a "good" show. This show was great! It was at one of the casino's that has a huge indoor arena, and I could just sit there and watch...which I did for 4 hours until the show ended. It reminded me how much I LOVE these horses and how much I miss showing them!


Sunday, October 23, 2011

Non-reving...on a weekend.....in LAS....


As I was sitting here I was wondering who Sammy was...I bet Sammy was a non-rev who got stuck here and made a pile of money by opening this bar in LAS.



So lets just start out by saying, I have horrible luck (in general) esp non-reving. I can tell tales of horror about many different airports though BNA has a special place in my heart for that.

Las Vegas is not a non-revers paradise by any means. This place is ALWAYS busy (can you tell I am there now?) Out of my three attempts I have only managed 1 successful non-rev trip to and from LAS, and apparently that was a fluke. Last weekend...was definately not my lucky day, after sitting here for 10hours I ended up buying a $300 ticket so I could make it to work on Monday.

So far today isn't looking much better, but I do have a better back up. John has to drive his car to ABQ after his trip today, so if I haven't gotten out of here by then I am in for a treat...an 8 hour car ride! But at least it's not a $300 ticket.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Jimmy Buffett!!

So we were supposed to go see Jimmy Buffett NEXT weekend but since John ended up with a 5:40am show on Sunday, we decided to go this past weekend! We got great last minute seats (which is how I go this pic) we were next to/behind the stage but we were so close it was amazing! We had never seen Jimmy before ( but love his plane) and decided that we should go see him, since John was already in LAS. He puts on a great concert...and really who doesn't love Jimmy?

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Land of Fun and Sun

So it's been a while since I've been on here there are 2 reasons, the first (and biggest) is that I have actually had to work (the horror!) and then passed out on the couch about 8:30pm....truly a sign I have gotten old. The second (and more exciting reason) is that John was "unofficially" transferred to FLL. So in the interest of not screwing up our luck we decided to wait to tell anyone until it was official ie: the bids came out and he was based in FLL. So after pushing the bids back 2 days, and finally having them come out sometime late last night....it's official John will be based in FLL starting Nov 1!!!! This is exciting for 2 reasons 1) he will have a line and 2) he will get to see his parents more often as they are in FL for the winter, and it gives me someplace to visit when it gets chilly here.

So right now we are trying to figure out how/when to drive his car down there and all that sort of fun stuff. We are trying to plan it so I can visit with my parents for a day before they leave on their cruise out of FLL, lucky bastards. Other than that (and me working) not a lot else is new, I did institute a "Menu Program" for the days when John is home, and will post more about that tomorrow!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

View from the Top

So I haven't posted much lately as I have been super busy (actually working again) and we have some news but that will have to wait until Wednesday!

Over the weekend I non-reved to LAS for Jetcareers which was a lot of fun!! I had a great time talking to other pilot's wives, it's always nice to talk to other wives that understand the industry, schedules, and all the other crap that goes with being married to a pilot! And John got a chance to talk airplanes with a bunch of pilots, which he loves to do. This was the view from the suite in the Bellagio, it was amazing!

Friday, September 23, 2011

a sick pilot's wife....

No one wants to be sick, it's a pain in the ass. Either your at work and feel awful, or sitting at home and feeling awful. But what's worse is being sick when your hubby's gone, though I hate to be sick when he's home!

If you hadn't guessed by now, I had strep throat this past week, which I get anywhere from 2-5 times a year. Apparently it has to do with the fact (the reason I get it so often)is that I still have my tonsils? though no one has offered to take them out yet.

What stinks though is that I can't just lay on couch and say "poor me." If John's not home it's just me. Me to clean up and feed the horses every day. Me to change Molly (aka Hookers) bandage twice a day...and on and on.....It's one of the times I really wished John was home, so I could just lay on the couch and watch movies, and not have to worry about doing everything else myself.

Then what's worse is having to clean before the pilot comes home....because god forbid the pilot become sick! Beside him having to take sick time and the worry of blowing an ear drum, I've learned that sick pilots (and guys in general) are just kind of cry babies. No doubt John, even if he is a little sick, act's like his life is coming to an end. This means that I try to super clean so he doesn't get sick...remember how much I *like* cleaning? http://reallifeofapilotswife.blogspot.com/2011/08/cleaing-fairy-comes-once-weekto-bad-its.html So I wander aimlessly with a can of Lysol blasting the entire house with it, counters, bedroom, bathroom, kitchen anything that he might touch!

You know what I hate more than Cleaning? Cleaning when I'm sick!!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

A Wounded Hooker


So if you remember from my previous post Hooker
isn't always the nicest horse (certainly not the nicest one we have). So it goes to figure when I go to Disney for 3 days at some point she cuts her leg. I didn't hardly notice it at first, as her knee's and hocks are almost black. But after looking closer I noticed it was cut...ok not too bad....then I cleaned it out...and found it was pretty deep. Of course, because she HATES the hose! Which is awesome because it gets hydro'd at least once a day, which is fun. She usually starts by running in circles around me and trying to run away from the hose (though she is getting better) once she realizes it isn't going to eat her she stands still, as long as she can eat. Then as long as she eats she stands there while I wrap it...not the easiest as it's right on her knee so I did a version of a standing wrap which at the top holds the actual gauze in place. Also no stall so that doesn't help it stay on, I could put her in the round pen in the barn but she would probably go ape not being able to see the other horses and screw herself up more!

The key to treating a wounded Hooker is food. I am quite sure I could cut her leg off and if she was eating she would be fine. This also works well when I have to give her the banamine shot, she has to wait at the gate while I give it (and she is VERY good) once I am done she gets to go eat!

While Hooker may not be my *favorite* horse she certainly has shown she has some good traits. If Neeko (the TB) had sliced his knee as bad he would have thought he was dying and would hobbling around on 3 legs. Hooker, she doesn't seem to care at all!

Saturday, September 17, 2011

9/11...from a pilot's wife perspective...

To fly west, my friend, is a flight we all must take for a final check
Author unknown




So I realize this is a little late but we were out of town read: not near my computer. As the wife of a commercial airline pilot maybe I have a different view on this than others. But let me go back a little.

At the time 9/11 happened I was a senior in college, didn't know John, didn't know much about aviation. At the time it was tragic but truly didn't effect me much.

Interesting how something at the time didn't effect me but does now 10 years later.

I truly don't have a problem with John flying on 9/11 I figure the odds of anything happening again on that day are pretty slim, after all the news media won't leave it alone. Not (in any way to say) that we shouldn't ALWAYS remember but I really wonder if the "right way" to remember is to stare drooling at the tv all day watching the same footage over and over again. I don't think it's constructive as a country or for individuals. I believe (right or wrong) there should be 1 maybe 2 well done documentaries (let the history channel do them) on 9/11, much like there are on Pearl Harbor and D-Day. The news media beating it into the ground I don't believe does anyone, any good.

I have learned that the aviation industry is a small, small, world. I have since met a good friend who is a FA for AA, who knew some of the crew members who died. Which is why when I was catching up on my reading this article ticked me off. I have been reading all the newspapers and magazines that piled up while we were gone and in the Christian Science Monitor there is an article about a woman who's husband died on one of the AA flights. She had/has 5 kids (two she adopted after 9/11) she turned down 2 million from a 9/11 fund, and instead sued AA for untold (but more than 2 million) amounts of money. And in reading the article she still (apparently) gets upset when AA is mentioned. Having never lost a spouse in a tragedy like this I am unsure what I would do. However (as a pilot's wife) this made me livid. She wasn't the only one who lost her husband that day, what about the wives/families of the guys (and crews) flying the planes? Really she is going/went after AA? Under what grounds besides it was their plane? The FAA has specific training in case of terrorism on airplanes and what protocall pilots are supposed to follow. They followed those FAA rules, they have since been changed because of 9/11 much like everything else to do with aviation. How were the pilots to know this would be different from the hijackings in the 70's and 80's? More over (again) how is this AA fault? I am sorry and this may be horrible and mean but if I was married to one of the guys flying that plane, I would go to this lady's house and burn it down; well maybe not literally but you get the point. I take it (even though it wasn't my husband flying) as more of an insult to the pilot's (and crews) that they "didn't do their jobs." Maybe I'm just hypersensitive about it being married to a pilot, but it annoys the crap out of me that she turned down 2 million (which would have been more than enough to live on comfortable) just to sue AA to get MORE money.

As I mentioned earlier I don't have a problem with John flying on 9/11 it doesn't bother me anymore than him flying to Mexico! Actually it probably bothers me less, Mexico has some sketchy ATC, and of course everyone being killed. As a side note when John still worked at XJT they sent out an email saying that in order to not be robbed (in Mexico) they should wear black plastic watches....awesome!

Back to 9/11 I really hope no one was offended by anything I said, and in no way am I saying it shouldn't be remembered, it truly was a tragedy. I am saying however that maybe we (as a country, and individuals) didn't learn much from it. Maybe ask the Russians how well it worked for them when they invaded Afghanistan? They were really trying too, not saying our military isn't doing a superb job because they are (and my hats off to military families/spouses they are incredible people!). However, when the Russians went in they just tried to kill anything that moved, we do try to avoid killing innocent people, but how can we be successful if they weren't?

A country without a memory is a country of madmen.
George Santayana

History teaches everything including the future.
Lamartine

If history repeats itself, and the unexpected always happens, how incapable must Man be of learning from experience.
George Bernard Shaw

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Older than I thought I was......

This is my favorite picture of the fireworks at Disney.

So we had a great time visiting Disney and City Walk! John's friend Steve joined us for some of the trip and it was a blast! I had heard that hanging out with younger people is supposed to make you "stay young" well it really just made me feel old! Allow me to recap.....

So John is 6 yearsish older than me and his buddy Steve is 7 yearsish younger than me...I know this sounds like one of those awful story problems from math in 6th grade but I will give you the answer. This means that Steve is 13 years (ish) younger than John. He's one of John's buddies from XJT and really is a blast to hang out with, however a few times I realized I had gotten old when I wasn't looking.....

We all meet up at the airport in MCO, Steve got there first, then me, then John. So Steve and I go to get the rental car while we wait for John's flight....when I realized I had become my parents....I am trolling around the rental car looking for anything wrong (scratch, ding whatever) because no way in hel* I want to have to pay because somebody else hit something...Steve's looking at me like I'm crazy...and I realized...this is what my parents would do, I used to hop in the rental car and not care! Strike 1 for being old.....

So that night we go to City Walk at Universal, hang out at Margaritaville, a cigar bar, then onto the clubs. Which I was super excited about...the last few times I've been in LAS I've wanted to go into a club or two but just haven't made it. We go inside grab a beer, and they are playing something like Michael Jacksons "Billie Jean" but it's not...though the tv screens are showing the video the music was entirely....for lack of better word....BAD....and loud. This, this was the defining moment when I knew I had crossed over to OLD. So we hung around with Steve for a while and once he met a girl (who was super nice) I couldn't run out the door fast enough...you guessed it....back to Margaritaville. Strike 2

The next morning John and I get up up about 9:30ish..Steve is still passed out cold. John, walk to McDonald's get a 2 cheeseburger meal and split it...it's cheaper, I am clinging to the fact this is because he is on first year pay, and not another sign of being old!

Manage to check out and make our way to Disney World. Have a great day at the park courtesy of the girl Steve had met the nigt before who turned out to be super fun to hang out with! We decide when we get back to go swimming. But first Steve is starving, so we find vending machines, Disney is not Vegas at 1am nothing is open! As we are wandering around I am thinking....if I eat this late I feel like crap in the morning...Pretty sure this is another bad sign of being old...Strike 3.

We head to the pool, Steve happily toting his iPad. He insists the sounds coming out of it are Top 40......and I wonder who's Top 40? Certainly not mine; it sounds like the crap from the club the other night...I am absolutely sure this makes me horrifically dinosaur age now. Strike 4.

So overall it was a blast (we love you Steve!) But it got me thinking about age. I'm not "old" by any means...I reserve that for my parents :) But I am certainly not as young as I thought I was either...

Friday, September 9, 2011

Magic Mouse Land....


Of course I mean Disney!! So we are about to leave for Disney World. John is leaving from LAS and I am leaving from ABQ. As for my part it's pretty easy (relatively) take the dogs to the kennel, set the cats up for the few days we are gone, stuff like that, we already arranged for one of our good friends to watch the horses. The biggest plus I have going for me is I have a SEAT!! Now this may sound strange to some of you... of course you would have a seat if your flying there.....not so true when you non-rev. Which is why I try my hardest NEVER to non-rev, especially to Orlando. The Magic Mouse Land Planes are ALWAYS full and have hordes of non-revs waiting in the wings, this time I used points to get there!

John however is not fairing quite as well, though he does have the added bonus of being able to jumpseat. However I doubt even that will save him! The flight he is trying to get on is already oversold, and has 23 non-revs listed! As a side note, Johns new company has a base there and we were tossing around the idea of him trading down there and going for the winter, but the non-rev/flt loads are enough to assure us this isn't the best place to commute to and from!

The flight loads for John instill instant fear in my heart, (well this time it doesn't b/c I have a seat:). But I am not a good non-rever, I hate the fact that your always the last one on the plane, every one's glaring at you (it's not my fault I wasn't *that* person running up at the last second), only middle seats left, and there's no where to put your bag and as a non-rev I NEVER check a bag (ok did it once but that was on the way home), who knows if you'll actually get where you want to go......I just don't have the personality for it, I like to know if I'll get on, and where I'll sit.

John however (god bless him) is fantastic at this, probably a good thing he does it all the time. And he doesn't understand at all my panic about non-reving. I contend bars in airports are for non-revs!

Anyways back to Disney! We won't be there for very long. We are staying at the Port Orleans Resort which I am super excited about, as I have NEVER stayed on property before! We are only going to the park for 1 day the other 2 we are just going to hang out and do some much needed relaxing! We also plan on hitting up Disney's Boardwalk which has (my favorite thing) a dueling piano bar!!!

The first night we are there one of our good friends is going to fly down and meet us, and we are going to City Walk at Universal. If you remember how much I like the Hemisphere Dancer
we are all going to go and pay homage to her lets face it John and his buddy are pilots, and it is a plane! We scored a hotel within walking distance, so we will probably have a few Margarita's, since of course we'll be at Margaritaville!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Missing My Pilot.


So I am not normally a boo-hoo I miss my pilot type of person. For those of you who know me I'm not a sappy type of person at all! My personality really fits in well with the pilot wife lifestyle, I am pretty independent and don't mind doing things on my own. This is a good thing because I figure this year John will only be home for approximately 1/3 of the year. My math goes something like this:

30 days in a month - 10 days John is off = 20 days he isn't home!

Now hopefully this will get better over time, but really I don't mind. I'm not being heartless when I say I don't normally miss him. I do miss him. But it's kind of in a way like "Crap I missed my favorite tv show, oh well I'll see it next week." Now for those of you who's husbands aren't pilots this may sound mean, but with him gone so much it's just a fact of life for us.

This week I miss John a little more than normal, mostly because I was sick most the time he was home. He was home for *longer* (longer being a relative term by about 7 hours) than normal. However, since I felt like crap and didn't move off the couch most the time, combined with going to bed at 10pm, the time seemed to fly by and I feel like I barely saw him at all! So I'll end with a quote from one of my favorite authors Richard Bach. Some of his stuff is a little out there, and some a little technical, overall though I like him, and he flies airplanes!

Can miles truly separate you from friends.....If you want to be with someone you love, aren't you already there?
-Richard Bach

Saturday, September 3, 2011

Good food for you, and good for the wallet!

Pierogi's 1lb $2.99, blackcurrant jam $3.99, Ground Cinnamon 7 for $3.89, Kagor Wine $8.99
Smoke Riga Sprats $1.99 and Mackerel Fillets in oil 2 for $1.99


So I am not the type of person who really cares what I eat. Pez for breakfast? Sure why not...also adding to my long list of breakfast items; pop rocks, oreo's, cold pizza, the list goes on and on. Clearly I am not the type of person who shops (often) at say, Trader Joe's or Wholefoods. Also let's face it I'm a pilot's wife and those places are pretty pricey, and in case you hadn't heard they sometimes make less than window washers

However I have become a HUGE fan of ethnic grocery stores (by ethnic I don't mean Hispanic~sorry, don't like the food to start with, and prices aren't that great). What I do mean however is Russian, Polish, and Ukrainian stores. Arabic stores are also a great deal, if you can find them, and like Middle Eastern food. These stores are undiscovered gems in my opinion. I first discovered one when we were living in Houston, there is a pretty good sized Russian store on the south side somewhere. The first time I went in I was like a kid in a candy store! Why yes, I would like a monster bottle of blackcurrent for $3.99, there is also the best chicken seasoning in the world (which I didn't put in the pic) that is great for throwing in the crock pot! And John would be very sad if I didn't mention this, they usually have Turkish coffee, and of course it's cheap...$4.99 a bag, I can't find it for that price anywhere else, even on Amazon!!

If you are one of those people who isn't comfortable in foreign countries where you can't understand/read anything these stores are really not for you. They tend to be pretty crowded, everything and usually everyone is speaking in a different language, but if you can get past that they are phenomenal stores.

Also as an added bonus to being mostly (super) cheap the food is actually better for you than your average chain grocery store Kroger/Smiths/Jewel etc. Take for instance those pierogi's there are 6 ingredients in them, and I can pronounce/know all of them. This HAS to be healthier for you than the ones you snag out of the freezer at Walmart with 20 different things I can't pronounce, not to mention the price, $2.99 for a 1lb bag!! Hard to see but one of the tins on the counter is Mackerel Fillets in Oil. First off John loves this stuff and it travels exceedingly well, second it was 2 for $1.99 and third, there are 3 ingredients in it again all things I can pronounce.

Now as for the wine/beer/liquor they sell. First off let me say I am not a California wine person, sure they make a few good ones, but a blind squirrel finds a nut once and a while right? I also am not a red fan, but I have yet to get a bad one at these stores. It's hard to describe the taste, it's just so very different, same with the beer, it has a VERY different taste. And for those die hard alcoholics it has WAY more alcohol per bottle than the stuff made here, the bottle in the picture is %16.

Now my favorite store is a Polish store in Chicago (go figure right?). The trickiest part of any of these stores is usually the deli (aside from actually finding the store itself). We got exceptionally lucky in Houston and the guy was very nice and liked the fact that I at least knew how to say "please" and "thank you" in Russian, so he gave us a crash course on the types of sausages and cheese's most store's like this carry. If you haven't had this benefit, it's more like blindly shooting at the squirrel I mentioned earlier :). Basically you get to the deli and point, you can try and butcher whatever word is in front of what you want, but your better off pointing unless it's going horrible wrong, then hope you like what you get. Same with the liquor selection at the store in Chicago, it's all BEHIND the cash registers, so you have NO way of knowing much of anything. I try (unless I am looking for something in particular) to look at see which one has the fewest bottles, I like to think this means that it's popular=good, not just out of stock.

All in all I would highly recommend you find a store like this and check it out of course unless you live in ABQ because there are none. Also please don't think the people are being rude because they aren't talking to you, chances are they don't know English that well, and a smile and nod will go along way!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Pilot's and their BBQ!



So just a little background for the non-aviation folks.

USAirways- while I think technically based in PHX used to be based in CLT (Charlotte N.C.), for these purposes this was a CLT crew.

Continental- definitely a Houston based company.

"Centers" this refers to where pilots check in when they are flying across the interstate in the sky. For instance Kansas City Center- controls traffic in and round Kansas and parts of other states, I'm guessing Southern IL and such.....Centers give them directions such as altitudes if they need to change them and whatever else.

So we begin this story by saying that John never even mentioned this to me, it was through his buddy he was flying with that I found out about it. By chance before John left XJT he had an opportunity to fly with a guy he had met a few months early that was really cool. So John and his buddy are flying from Chicago to Memphis for the night where they plan to grab dinner at a BBQ place, since MEM is know for BBQ and all!

John and his buddy (XJT) check in with Kansas City Center (KCC)probably something like: Kansas City Center this is XJT how are you tonight?
KCC: Fine how are you?
XJT: Good, heading down to MEM with my buddy and going to grab some BBQ for dinner.
KCC: That's too bad because your flying over some of the best BBQ in the country right here in Kansas.
Random USAir: They must be going to North Carolina!
Random CAL: No they must be going to Texas!
XJT: Nope heading to Memphis best BBQ in the country!
Random USAir: Make them hold!

So as you can see from the short dialog BBQ is (apparently I never knew) very important to pilots! Which leads to a second point.....ANY food is important to pilots....especially if it's free!

Pilots are notorious for being cheap. John (if available) will eat as much free breakfast at the hotel then take as much with him as possible that won't go bad. The same thing for the Presidents Club (we splurged on a membership since he commutes) he will go in there and scavenge...fruit, cookies, peanuts, carrots...whatever he can find, and I know he isn't the only one to do this!

Since he has been on reserve and in one place almost every night since he started the new job I have been cooking (gasp, horror, and he's not dead yet!) and freezing things for him to take with and last night I can across the BEST recipe I thought I would share and it freezes well!!

Grilled Pierogies and Kielbasa

1lb Kielbasa (pork or turkey) cut into 4 pieces
2 tablespoons whole grain mustard *I used honey mustard b/c I didn't have whole grain we thought it was great.
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 Large white onion cut into 6 pieces *I didn't use an onion I HATE them
1lb frozen potato and cheddar pierogies (do not thaw) *I used 1/2lb cheese and 1/2lb potato that I got from a Russian food store in DEN and they were awesome!
Salt and ground pepper to taste
1/4 cup roughly chopped fresh parsley *I used dried stuff it was fine

1) Grill kielbasa on medium heat about 5min each side, set aside and keep warm.
2) Meanwhile toss onion and pierogies with 2tablespoons of olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill covered until they thaw ~about 5 min. Turn pierogies and onion grill for another 8min or so until cooked and onion is tender.
3) while pierogies are grilling whisk mustard and vinegar in a large bowl. Whisk in 2tablespoons of olive oil.
4) Slice kielbasa into pieces and add to bowl with mustard dressing, add pierogies and (chop)onion and add to mustard dressing. Add parsley and toss.



Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Living the Dream or Somthing Like That.......





So for those of you not familiar with the phrase "Living the Dream" it usually means that the pilot saying it really means......

1) I hate my schedule.
2) I am never home
3) The guy handing me my taco at the airport makes more than me.
4) Any combination of the above, plus whatever is wrong at the time.

Pretty much it means that they are trying to put some kind of positive spin on something that stinks....John will occasionally say "Living the Dream." He will say this perhaps when he's been ground stopped by crappy weather and will miss his connect home. Now occasionally pilots will say this and genuinely mean it, good for them, were not at that point yet.....




But the saying "Living the Dream" got me thinking about my dream, as far as airplanes go. I have to admit I LOVE this airplane, and her name is great too "Hemispher Dancer" how cool!! As you see from the picture it appears that Jimmy Buffet owns the plane (which he does, please don't come after me unless you want to give her to me) but I LOVE this plane, and would happily take her home, if I had millions, and millions of dollars.



Here is a little info about her. What it doesn't say is that she is an amphib (amphibian) as you can see from the next picture where her front landing gear come down. This means she can land on land = hence the wheels. But if you look at her she looks like a boat in the front, because she can land on water too. (And by land in water I don't mean those stupid looking float things, sorry anyone who likes them). Also note the engines are high so when she does land in water they aren't compromised.



If someone would have asked me 6-7 years or so ago (can it really be that long!?) what kind of plane this was my answer would have been "One that flies." Or if I saw her sitting in water perhaps the answer would have been "One that floats." And while I have learned a lot about airplanes being a pilots wife, I truly can't tell an Airbus from a Boeing until I get inside. (I can however tell you the differences in the way they fly). But this bird I LOVE her. I think it is the coolest thing ever to be able to take off from say Orlando, and land in the water at Key West and "taxi" her up to the dock!


She now sits as part of the Margaritaville in Orlando at Universals City Walk. I believe a cracked/broken wing spar? was her demise, apparently it can't be fixed. But the good news is I actually got to see her!! John actually lured me to Oshkosh (big general aviation show) by saying that "The Hemisphere Dancer will be there." He also told me Harrison Ford would be there...apparently he went the year after we did.


This is just a catch all picture of the City Walk at Universal.



So even though she will never fly again, you can always go see her and eat under the wing!!


Sunday, August 14, 2011

The less than $100 hamburger.

Looking out the window before we take off for our long 7 min flight!

So for those of you not familiar with general aviation the "$100 Hamburger" refers to flying your plane somewhere for lunch/dinner (a meal), because by the time you pay for gas it's a $100 hamburger. So anyways these days that price has gone up just a bit (sarcasm) since gas prices are sooo low.......also sarcasm. These days it gets kind of hard to find a $100 Hamburger much less a $300 Hamburger, but we did! The airport that is 10miles away from here has a CAF chapter there, and every Saturday for lunch they grill hamburgers at the hanger as a fundraiser.


This is the hanger we had lunch at, as you can see they have restored one plane and are working on another!


Here is our plane, not quite my ideal but better than what I'm going to show you. Let me tell you a little about my ideal plane....1) you can stand in it 2)it has a bathroom and 3) it goes faster than you can drive, little known fact I never new before I moved here. Small planes can and frequently do go slower than cars. I am not sure why people fly these planes, if I can beat the plane there with my car, I will choose my car. I know there are people (John included) who love to fly just to fly, but I am not that person!


This is John and his partner whom he co-owns the plane with, dragging it in a circle. This is about 2 seconds before John starts yelling and then the wing of the plane rams me in the stomach, this is what I get for taking pictures no doubt.


These are the people who are crazy, there is no way in HELL I would get in a glider. John contests that the people in the tow plane are generally the ones who suffer a little more when something goes wrong, but I say at least they have an engine!


I truly can't understand why ANYONE would get in one of these they look like flying coffins and there is NO engine. I know there are people who LOVE these and this airport we had lunch at is on one of the busiest glider airports out west but it is certainly not for me!


Back on the ground alive!!!!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Airplane Pinball; and why pilots really run through airports



So I have been thinking about this quite a bit the last couple times John has commuted, because invariable I end up sitting in front of the computer looking up flights (direct and indirect) to get John home. John has an EVO phone, but for some reason he doesn't use it to it's full potential, ie: looking up his own flights. Take for instance the last time he commuted home, he's in LAS which is huge, wandering from gate to gate to see if he can get on different flights. That's when I came up with the idea that he was like a pinball, wandering from gate to gate, and terminal to terminal bouncing around looking for a way home.

Which leaves me to my second point, when I say wandering sometimes it is wandering, sometimes (not often but does happen) it is flat out running to try and catch a flight. Pretty much the ONLY time you will see a pilot run (I mean flat out dead run) through the airport is to commute. Now most of the time going to work, it's better planned, because they know when they have to be there. On the way home however it becomes a free for all. What? You say the flight got in 20min early? Well if you RUN you can make the next flight home, otherwise you will be stuck sitting in the airport for 3 hours. This is when the running occurs. I don't (personally) know of ANY instances where he was running at work, if they switch planes and he was late coming in, the whole crew will walk. And NO is not to milk the clock by any means, they don't get paid until the cabin door actually shuts, so as a side note anytime you see a pilot he isn't getting paid, they ONLY get paid for the flying part.

You may be thinking all this (frantic running) for 3 hours? Remember that the pilot who is doing the mile sprint through the airport may only be home for 30 hours a week!

Friday, August 12, 2011

Ignorance at 35,000 feet






So as I was scrolling through facebook (and also having to work with very stupid people this week which is a different story) I have decided that I hate these people. Some people who are too nice (my husband for one) says "never hate anyone" I however am not that nice, and do hate these people; natural selection should have taken them out years ago!

I think some or most of this ignorance is from people who are too lazy (to read or do ANY research) or simply don't care and want to throw up their thoughts whether they are right or wrong is inconsequential. For instance I have seen people psychotically mad that they missed their flight and are screaming at the gate agent (or anyone they can find) because THEY got to the airport an hour before the flight left. Let me first say I am definitely guilty of this, however, if I miss my flight because my dumbas* couldn't get there in time, it's not the airlines fault, or the gate agents fault. Please don't let me hear you say your going to call your lawyer...really?? Go to the airline's website (any airline!) says be there 2 hours prior. Yes it stinks sitting around but to bad, if you don't like it don't fly...better yet take your "lawyers" car!

Also a little known fact... (not all airlines and not all maintenance) but some, and a lot more than anyone in the aviation industry wants (except the bean counters) maintenance is done in Mexico, El Salvador...it goes on, and scarily on. Here is a chart of the airlines and percentage they outsource, sans Southwest only because the chart is from 2001-2009 and Southwest didn't outsource then (they do now). However, Third World Mechanics Paid $2 per hour is another article (that mentions Southwest) and even more scary I think than the chart!

But what really bugs me is when someone spews ignorant vomit from their mouth....

Idiot: "Those airplanes are old"
Me: Well they are the same age as some of Southwest, USAir, Delta's ect."
Idiot: Those are maintained better"
Me: "Really? They all outsource at least SOME of their maintenance, which doesn't happen at this airline (yet)"
Idiot: "Well they are cleaner"
Me: "For real?! I found yes a chicken wing under a seat on my flight to FL one time!"
It is at this point I start drinking......



Yes, that is a chicken wing under the seat....anyone hungry?




And my personal favorite so far.....I am sitting in a paid for seat on a flight from TPA to DEN. John is in the front and and comes back to say a hi and chat during the flight. The idiot old people (besides just being a pain in my as* and asking a ton of questions and taking enough of the free snacks to feed Ethiopia for a year) ask me as we are about 600 feet off the deck (you can see the ground) "Do you think ATC is asleep?" If I could have at that point grabbed a mini and chugged it I would have!

For one yes, ATC has been in the news in a bad way, and I am in no way saying sleeping on the job is ok; but cut these guys a little slack have you EVER seen what their work schedule is and what they are allowed and not allowed to bring to work and do? For example: no reading of anything book, magazine nothing and this is perfectly fine for 99.9% of the time, but when you are working 9pm-3am in Casper WY what are you going to do? Also a little know fact (yes being sarcastic here) Pilots CAN land the plane with out ATC! Shocking I know!!

Anyways these are just a few tails of ignorance that drive me nuts!!