This weekend was one of those great adventures. I’ve been on my friend Eric’s case for the last two weeks about us going flying. I checked out my phone on Sunday morning to see a text from Eric.
‘Goooodmorning! Where would you like to go?’
I joked that we should go to Vegas, and when I got the radio silence I quickly suggested we should go to Santa Barbara. Without hesitation, Eric agreed: ‘Yes let’s do it.’
I turned up at Van Nuys Airport in San Fernando Valley, LA at 11am with a big smile on my face. I was excited and called my bro Eric. He said he was on the way and turned up a short time later with another friend, Dimity. The three of us got ready for take-off, but the funny part was Dimitry explained how to close the plane doors, but said we needed to keep it open for now because we have to put fuel in the plane and he didn’t want me to get hot and put the AC on. I said OK as we drove to get the gas, and he reiterated: “Make sure you close the door properly, because when we’re in the air we don’t want the door to open up.
I said “Ok that would be a good start, and the last thing I would like to worry about.” I checked the door 3 times before we took off.
We were all set and ready to go. The sky was clear and we flew nicely over to Santa Barbara. When we landed the first thing we needed to do was grab some lunch so we headed to an old, but cool fish restaurant. It was a real boys trip and we laughed and told stories, having so much fun that we almost forgot that we had to be back at the airport. When we realised we had 15 minutes to get there.
We got the check and we were away to the airport. As we get there the boys said I will sit in the front now. I was so ready to relax and had grabbed some m&ms to chill and enjoy my chocolate and the view. This wasn’t that case. As we flew over the water they told me it was my turn to fly. I looked at them both and was like, “really?”
This is the second time because I had already tried it over Malibu and Santa Monica on another occasion. That time it went wrong because when we started to slowly drop, I panicked and let go of the wheel. Eric told me to never ever do that: “If you let go it is like letting go of your life so hold on no matter what.”
This time I was determined to do well and stay calm.
As we are cruising above Santa Barbara I am looking down at the blue water and I manage to keep the plane steady. I was also wearing a black t-shirt so you could not see it but I am telling you the first couple of minutes my body got hot and I started sweating like crazy. Imagine having not only your life but also the lives of your two friends in your hands.
After a while I was calm and enjoyed the scenery as we were heading back to LA. As we landed I was so excited, thanked my boys for giving me an experience I would never have had without them. They were cool because it’s a normal thing for them, they fly all the time.
But now I can say it. I flew a plane.