What an amazing event, for the 8th time. But this year was different.
We flew in. First time in my life I flew in as a PIC into Sun n’ fun.
So, we woke up at 4:30am, left the house by 5 and we were taking off by 5:30. I haven’t been flying for 9 months – unbelievable how fast time flies – so everything took a little longer. Checklist, runup, taxi…
The sunrise was spectacular and although it was behind us, I kept looking back at the orange clouds. Flew with flight following and everything was smooth until we were getting ready to proceed with the Sun n’ Fun NOTAM procedures. Conditions were IFR, and I still do not have my IFR rating so Balazs made the call to be able to land. Since he was communicating and navigating I did not pay attention and I missed my instructions from the controller so we had to turn back and fly the route he gave us, this time successfully. As we were approaching the runway was covered with fog, only through a skinny strip of clear air I could see part of the runway. As we got closer everything got visible and landed the aircraft smooth as never before. I was so proud of myself.
As we arrived we could see the Balloons taking off. It was beautiful.
Then our adventures continued. I had a volunteer shift scheduled at the International Tent from 9-1pm but when we arrived at the gate they couldn’t find our credentials, and after about 30min my supervisor Ann showed up and got cleared everything. We worked a few hours but honestly it is not work just some socializing with pilots from all over the World while we had to make sure they sign in so they can keep track on the International visitors. It is a lots of fun. Unfortunately, I have not had a chance to meet up this year with Karl, the old German guy I befriended last year.
After we were released from our duties we went and walked the hangers and the show. We listened at the AOPA tent to a funny flight instructor’s stories and Balazs got us up in to a VIP tower to watch the airshow. Than we walked a little bit more ordered some bad food, took it back than found amazing Greek salad and Turley leg for Balazs,filled our bellys, than watched the Blue Angels for the first time in my life!
We made it back to the FBO and the staff there had a big cook- out and celebration we took a shower got us two chairs and as the sun disappeared so started to fly above us all the lit up airplanes.
Our plan was to leave the airport before it closed down at 10pm, but the night-show was still on by 10pm, so we could never fly out. And as our adventures started to get really exciting we found out that the FBP shots down at 10pm as well, so are all the hotel rooms booked out. But our luck was with us and although I wasn’t smart enough to pack the tent the receptionist from the FBO made a few phohe calls and found us a hotel room. This way we did not have to sleep under the sky. The shuttle took us back to Fairfield Inn. Without clean cloths, toothpase and contact lenses solution we went to sleep. Next day we had breakfast headed out to the airport and now without any complications, we took off and flew home. It was cold. And this is how you stop the vent blowing cold air in your face in the N89540. A pilot must be resourceful!
Here is a Youtube Video of my Sun N’ Fun 2014 Departure.