Miracle Over Lake Del Valle [The Flying Gourmet]

Jim Jellison - The Flying Gourmet

It was a not so great day to go flying, the morning started with low clouds and gusting winds.  But, I had cancelled my aircraft rentals two Fridays in a row and I was determined to get some time in an aircraft that I had recently been checked out in.   By the time I drove to the airport, the overcast was breaking up and the winds had calmed down enough that I proceeded with the preflight.

Sticky Gear

The aircraft is a beauty, a 1980 Cessna 172, Cutlass RG, that has been totally refurbished.   Her bright shiny paint glistened in the morning sun and the smell of her new leather seats was almost intoxicating. I commented to my flying companion that this bird was quite a departure to some of the other rental aircraft I had taken him up in.

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A Trip to the Palm Springs Air Museum [The Flying Gourmet]

Jim Jellison - The Flying Gourmet

Palm Springs Air MuseumPalm Springs Air Museum
745 N Gene Autry Trail
Palm Springs, CA 92262
(760) 778-6262

Just recently returned from by biennial trip to Palm Desert, funny I go there to enjoy the dry desert heat, but this year it rained. It’s strange that I had to go to the desert to experience rain! Oh well, such is the new California weather paradigm.

The Palm Springs area has a lot of wealth. I have never seen so many Bentley and Rolls Royce automobiles, not to mention Maserati’s, Ferrari’s, and Lamborghini’s. So, as you might expect the wealth is also expressed in the quality of the displays and aircraft at their air museum. I understand that up to a few years ago the gentleman who owned most of the aircraft allowed them to be flown on occasion. This fact really separated this museum from most! It is one thing to have an antique warbird and another to actually keep it in flying condition $$$.

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Iffy Weather Between Livermore and Columbia [The Flying Gourmet]

Jim Jellison - The Flying Gourmet

Columbia, CA
With the drought in California, the last couple of years had great winter flying weather with hardly a weather front to content with. I got spoiled and sort of expected that anytime I found myself with a couple of extra dollars I could just schedule an aircraft. Well, welcome El Niño, and some careful planning needs to be made before heading off into the wild blue yonder.

Just last week I scheduled a Piper Arrow (low wing, 200 horse power, retractable landing gear, and constant speed propeller) for a local flight. I invited a friend of mine to accompany me, but that morning I found the weather to be a bit iffy. Now it’s easy to make a go/no go decision if the weather is flat out IFR (Instrument Flight Rules – visibility less than 3 miles and ceiling less than 1,000 feet) or it is a perfectly clear day with mild wind. It’s the in between weather that is a head scratcher. You might be able to depart the airport but many destinations are weathered in and the big question is, will you be able to get back? Based upon the latest weather report and my local weather experience, I decided to go.

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Veterans Rock!

Happy Veterans Day!

Each veteran joined the service for a different reason and took a different path during their military career. They held different jobs, lived in different places, met different people, experienced different cultures, and have shaped history to what it is today. No matter why, where or how long they’ve served, their impact on the world is unmatched.

But that difference doesn’t stop there. Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Marines eventually come back and bring a unique perspective to share with us here at home. With that they bring wonderful stories.

Instead of just thanking a veteran this Veterans Day, ask them about their stories. Ask them about why they served, where they went, who they met, what they did and how they did it.

Then listen.

You’ll learn about who they were before they joined the military and who they are now.

You’ll learn about the places they’ve been and how much different it is than your perceptions from reading or TV.

You’ll learn about the colorful people they met and the lifelong friends they became.

You’ll also learn about about their impact and how it shapes the world today.

As I explore our great town of Livermore, I’m impressed with how supportive we are for our veterans. Attend any event, festival or parade, and you can see the communities’ appreciation for what they’ve done. But it’s not just our community support for veterans that’s impressive, it’s also how our veterans support our community. With one veteran to fourteen civilians, they are everywhere, deeply involved making our town a better place.

So this Veterans Day, don’t just thank a veteran for their service. Instead, take a moment and ask them about their story. They will be happy to share and you just might take something away that positively impacts you.

Veterans make a difference. By giving them a chance to make another, it’s the best form of appreciation you can give.

Happy Veterans Day from Livermore Rocks!