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Christmas.


Phil_P
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Well folks, I know for a lot of people, for a lot of reasons, Christmas day is possibly one of the most stressful, and sometimes unhappiest days of the year. Thankfully for me, it was full of family, friends and happiness, and although it may sound a little cheesy, paramotoring is playing a significant part in my joy. I'd like to say thanks to everyone I've had contact with in this new extended family, who are helping me with this fantastic new part of my life.

A couple of weeks ago, I had no idea who John Gillespie Magee was, or that he is buried a mere fifteen miles from where I sit typing. He was a young Canadian, who, during the Second World War, at the age of nineteen, joined the RCAF, flying Spitfires in Britain. Tragically, he died in his aircraft during a training exercise and is buried in the village of Scopwick. Although you may not know his name, you almost certainly know the words that he dreamed up, starting, it is said at thirty thousand feet. They are to me some of the most inspirational I have ever heard;

Oh I have slipped the surly bonds of earth

And danced the skies on laughter silvered wings

Sunward I've climbed, and joined in tumbling mirth, the sun split clouds

And done a hundred things you had not dreamed of

Wheeled and Soared and Swung,

High in the sunlit silence, hov'ring there

I've chased the shouting winds along and flung my eager craft

Through footless falls of air

Up, up, the long delirious burning blue

I've touched the windswept heights with easy grace

Where never lark nor e'er eagle flew

And while with silent lifting mind I've trod

The high un-trespassed sanctity of space

Put out my hand and touched the face of God.

Thanks everyone, Merry Christmas, and Happy New Year.

Edited by Guest
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Phil- yes indeed a very moving piece of work indeed.

As a lighter response, someone has penned what the CAA/FAA response would likely to be-

1. Pilots must insure that all surly bonds have been slipped entirely before aircraft taxi or flight is attempted.

2. During periods of severe sky dancing, crew and passengers must keep seatbelts fastened. Crew should wear shoulderbelts as provided.

3. Sunward climbs must not exceed the maximum permitted aircraft ceiling.

4. Passenger aircraft are prohibited from joining the tumbling mirth.

5. Pilots flying through sun-split clouds under VFR conditions must comply with all applicable minimum clearances.

6. Do not perform these hundred things in front of Federal Aviation Administration inspectors.

7. Wheeling, soaring, and swinging will not be attempted except in aircraft rated for such activities and within utility class weight limits.

8. Be advised that sunlit silence will occur only when a major engine malfunction has occurred.

9. "Hov'ring there" will constitute a highly reliable signal that a flight emergency is imminent.

10. Forecasts of shouting winds are available from the local FSS. Encounters with unexpected shouting winds should be reported by pilots.

11. Pilots flinging eager craft through footless halls of air are reminded that they alone are responsible for maintaining separation from other eager craft.

12. Should any crewmember or passenger experience delirium while in the burning blue, submit an irregularity report upon flight termination.

13. Windswept heights will be topped by a minimum of 1,000 feet to maintain VFR minimum separations.

14. Aircraft engine ingestion of, or impact with, larks or eagles should be reported to the FAA and the appropriate aircraft maintenance facility.

15. Aircraft operating in the high untresspassed sanctity of space must remain in IFR flight regardless of meteorological conditions and visibility.

16. Pilots and passengers are reminded that opening doors or windows in order to touch the face of God may result in loss of cabin pressure

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