What's So Great About Aviation?
Not too long ago a relative of mine asked me what I liked best about aviation and being a pilot. Usually I have a "canned" response that I blurt out for questions that could otherwise take a fair amount of time to explain. However I paused for a moment and wasn't sure what my favorite facets were. This caused me to take a few minutes and ask myself the same question. As most of us are well aware, individuals that take to the skies can have a bit of what we call "a type A personality". Maybe this fact was the reason for enjoying flying. The notion that I could defy Mother Nature to an extent and look upon the various creations below. Another idea that quickly blossomed in my mind was the ability to travel and see the world. I spent most of my formative years in smaller towns throughout Wisconsin and the dream of seeing what else was out there always intrigued me. A few other notions also came to mind: a respectable career, being a part of what some individuals may call a big fraternity, flexibility....And the list went on and on. But as I began to narrow in on my favorite part of flying it began to dawn on me. I was in the middle of my off-hitch and still had another week off to spend time with family and friends. The ability to go anywhere or do whatever so intrigued me that morning put a little grin on my face. In no other job or career had I ever seen the flexibility and availability for someone to "write their own ticket". Certainly not working on the farms or factories that I paid my dues in. The military was great and the friends I've made over the years are even greater. However it didn't take me too long to learn that the Army has a funny way about wanting things done their way. But I digress. In the end, all of the great things about aviation such as traveling, morning sunrises from above the clouds, etc are all great. But for me, the ability to experience all the aforementioned likes is dwarfed by the ability of aviation to provide for one's family and still provide an abundance of time to spend with one's family. I'm sure every pilot out there has their own vision of what makes aviation great. And there's no right or wrong answer to what drives so many of us towards this field. What is undeniably great however, is that flying can be whatever you make of it. It can be your dream, your little slice of heaven, and those are moments and memories that no one can ever take from you.