Sunday, September 30, 2007

There are a bunch of different cloud types here. Can you name them all?

In todays world of big business, board meetings, task commitees, motivational speakers, etc......

I thought it might be fun to share these with you. I got it from a posts on, which is the great forum for all of us hang glider pilots, old & new.

Take a few minutes to enjoy these, and have a laugh on me !

Friday, September 28, 2007

An incredible sunset this evening here in Texas. We didn't get finished with the testing this week. Hopefully, we can get the 911 services 100% by tuesday.
Every world hang gliding competitor knows where this place is. It's the airport at Big Springs, Texas. I was very dissappointed today when I visited there. I talked with a pilot there, who flys a tug, and he informed me that there was only 1, get this..., 1 hang glider pilot that flys there now,and he is new to the sport. I figured since I was in the area, that I would rent a glider, tow up and do a little XC while I had the weekend off here. I brought my gear, but not my glider. Who would have thought that this was the case here. They said that they would love to have a bunch of pilots here, but none right now. Perfect place, and perfect conditions, and NO way to take advantage of my time here. Go figure.

Posting this for Dub. I know he feels my pain. But, we have a plan ! ! ! droll..droll

Thursday, September 27, 2007

There was a nice rain storm here in Texas today. I will post more pics from here soon.

This is the last of the New York pics that I'm going to post. I hope everyone enjoyed them.

This is a shot of the Empire state building from a tourist's point of view, while working. Hard to imagine that it is as tall as Lookout Mountain. Know how many stories that it is?? Google is a good thing, huh?!! haha

The Holland tunnel. What a mess it is, especially at rush hour traffic. 1 lane of traffic. Go figure.

Posting this one for Wendy. Oh, by the way,,,,,,there was a sale too, just kidding, haha!
In New York City last week,,,,,,I'm in Texas this week. Hopefully, we will be finished by the weekend. Will post more when I get them.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Here is some more pictures from New York City.
This is Jersey City(L), and the Manhattan Skyline, coming across on the ferry.

Ellis Island. You really should Google it, and be amazed! While your there, here's a couple of questions for you. How tall do you think the Statue of Liberty is?? What is it made of??? What does it say on the tablets? What does the points on the crown represent? Which way does it face? sorry, got carried away. I just couldn't get over how tall, or how short it is, gessh.

This is the end of the line for the subways on Coney Island.
Coney Island from the beach. Take a good look now, because they are tearing it all down, and putting up condos. They call it progress,,,not what I call it but...they didn't ask me.
This hole in the ground is the very secret to getting around in New York City quickly. If there is such a thing. It cost $10.00 a Day to ride the subways,,,,anywhere. That's it. And NO traffic problems,,,what a deal. You have Never experienced traffic until you have driven in Manhattan! Oh, and forget about driving thru China town,, omg. There was a retired Marine and his buddy sitting down taking a break from walking as I was driving thru and he was just smiling and shaking his head. I rolled down the window and said," darn tourist, Semper Fi". At which point he laughed and said" Semper Fi, it's easier to walk". I asked him where he was an hour ago. Can you tell I wasn't going very fast???? :^}
The Staten Island Ferry. When Joel and I got there, we had to find out where to buy the tickets. We looked all over the darn place. Finally, I saw a guy wearing a HD t-shirt, walked up and asked him. He looked at me and said,"" it's the only free ride you will ever get". I can't imagine how many 1,000's of people ride that thing everyday to and from work, people like me, etc...... and it is free. You can ride it all day if you like. Shocked me, for real.

New York City is a large and exciting town. If you do it right,,, You can have the time of your life. If you do it wrong,,,,well, just don't go where you know you don't need to go, and the wrong time of the night. It has a rhythm to it, if you pay attention to your surroundings. The only people that are honking in New York, are the tourists! So, in the language of the guys in Brooklyn,,,,,,, Get the f*** outta 'ere.... Hope that Joel and I get sent back up there to finish up. We didn't have near enough time to play. Oh,, that's right, we were there to work, oops, ha ha!

Saturday, September 22, 2007

The Dade county Photo and Calendar contest was tonight. This picture of the flight park was awarded the month of August. I thought I had better pictures entered, however, I'm happy to at least have one to represent our flying community, Lookout Mtn. Flight Park.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

The Coney Island Pier.

Can't go to Coney Island without getting a dog from Nathan's. Famous since 1916.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Guess where I'm at this week? Has something to do with apples, ha ha. I will post more tomorrow.

Saturday, September 15, 2007

While working today, I came across something you don't see everyday. A deer farm. Hunters use the deer urine to aid them in deer season. As you can see, there are a lot of little fawns here. It wouldn't be that special of a thing really, Except that I have a story to go with it guaranteed to make you at least smile ! ( sorry Dub, I just have to tell this one)
My great friend/brother Dub is a avid deer hunter and has some green fields that he plants, mows, takes care of all year to reap it's benefit during the season. Now Dub and his wife Cindy, have a pet deer. He told me once that they do the urine thing also to sale, and use. I had never hear of this kind of thing before in my life, since I am not much of a hunter. I do like venison tho! All I could think about was,,, just how do you harvest it(for lack of a better way of putting it), and get it in those little bottles. He starts off with,"well, you see. At a certain time of day, we feed them, and normally about that time is when they have to do their business. So, Cindy gets behind it, and bends down, and holds this little bottle............... by this time, I think I need a bottle myself because I am laughing so hard. He was just pulling my leg, however, best laugh that I had in a very long time. Just picturing someone walking behind those deer with a little bottle, gessshhh. "don't care who you are, that there is funny now"---Larry the Cable Guy. Hope it made you smile

I'm just going to let you wonder about the animal that made the shadow, lol.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Dr. Bruce Short will be dearly missed by everyone that knew him. He was a very caring, and generous man. Unfortunately, I only had the pleasure of being around him a couple of times. He passed away one afternoon while taking a nap after playing a round of golf. Something that he loved doing as much as hang gliding. He was only 51 years young. What a tragic loss for our community, and our lives. The world was definitely a better place with him in it.

There was over 65 people in attendance at his wake this evening. Many of his friends, and families stood up and told "Bruce stories", about the good, and not so good times of the memorable past with him in their lives. Many had a tough time with it, which was more than understandable. Through their stories, sharing of the memories, the laughter, I was moved ever so much. Matt, and other friends that started out together, told of the tough times when the flight park was but a dream, and he had yet to started Med. school. Kind of reminded me of a brotherhood of pilots. Which I guess, in a sense, is what we all are a part of, those that love this sport, and are actively pursuing those elusive thermals and XC days, Birdwannabes. He started touching the sky back in the '70's.

This was one of the most beautiful fresh flower arrangements I have ever seen.
He was also a member of the Royal Order of the Raven. Back when we were still able to fly Grandfather Mountain. Oh, and remember "The Great Race"?
He also had a great love for the fireworks. So, it was only fitting that we had some this evening. I was lucky enough to get this shot of them.

I won't forget this evening for a long time. Everyone brought dishes of food, to go with the ham & turkey that Doris put out tonight. What a feast that we had. The food, keg, desserts, stories, and the loving friendship was a very rare treat, and it is a shame that all of it had to be shared under these circumstances. It is always amazing to me how fast times passes by. There was some regrets that was shared this evening. Words spoken in anger, over trivial things, left unmended until it was too late. I wonder how many people have those like situations in their lives right now. Having not spoken to a brother or sister, mother or father, son or daughter, etc..... for a long time, because of something that happened, and you may not even remember what it was about. Yet,,, time goes by and it is left unresolved, when it could have been mended sometimes with a simple phone call. However, pride is a wicked beast, and will eat your lunch if given the chance. Would you rather have regrets? or a mended fence? Which would make your future a little brighter? Myself, I believe that life is too short to cause other people greif. Every person that you come in contact with, on a Daily basis, is fighting some kind of battle. Are you going to make it better, or add to it? Make someone's day,, make a phone call to someone you love and miss in your life, if you have a fence to mend. If not,,,, Gentle breezes, my friend.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

You looking at ME?
This post is for everyone that is local to Lookout Mtn. area. Dade County Chamber of Commerce is having it annual photo contests, "Keep DAde County Beautiful". One part of it is for the best 12 pictures to be chosen to go in their calendar for 2008, which is judged by a professional photographer. The other part, is the reason for this post. The " People's Choice". The way it works is everyone goes into the Chamber of Commerce building(which is the old railroad building in Trenton), and votes for their favorite photo. That's is. Last year, the winning photo recieved a whopping 11 votes. So you can see how important your vote is. I am not soliciting votes for my pictures. I am soliciting you just to go and vote this year. There's Alot of pictures submitted by members of the flying community, and I think one of them should win it. Who knows, if you go to the parties on Saturday nights, or fly here, you may be in some of them. Thanks for your support.

Sunday, September 09, 2007

I received this from a great friend of mine in an e-mail. I thought it deserved more than to be passed around only in emails, tho'. I will pass it on like that also, in case some on my list don't check out my blog. I have a long way to go before I think that I'm old, however, there are some 18 yr. olds that would differ.:^}

The other day a young person asked me how I felt about being old.

I was taken aback, for I do not think of myself as old. Upon seeing my reaction, she was immediately embarrassed, but I explained that it was an interesting question, and I would ponder it, and let her know.
Old Age, I decided, is a gift !
I am now, probably for the first time in my life, the person I have always wanted to be. Oh, not my body! I sometime despair over my body, the wrinkles, the baggy eyes, and the sagging butt. And often I am taken aback by that old person that lives in my mirror (who looks like my mother!), but I don't agonize over those things for long.
I would never trade my amazing friends, my wonderful life, my loving family for less gray hair or a flatter belly.
As I've aged, I've become more kind to myself, and less critical of myself. I've become my own friend. I don't chide myself for eating that extra cookie, or for not making my bed, or for buying that silly cement gecko that I didn't need, but looks so avante garde on my patio.
I am entitled to a treat, to be messy, to be extravagant.
I have seen too many dear friends leave this world too soon; before they understood the great freedom that comes with aging.

Whose business is it if I choose to read or play on the computer until 4 AM and sleep until noon?

I will dance with myself to those wonderful tunes of the 60&70's, and if I, at the same time, wish to weep over a lost love ... I will.

I will walk the beach in a swim suit that is stretched over a bulging body, and will dive into the waves with abandon if I choose to, despite the pitying glances from the jet set. They, too, will get old.

I know I am sometimes forgetful. But there again, some of life is just as well forgotten. And I eventually remember the important things.

Sure, over the years my heart has been broken. How can your heart not break when you lose a loved one, or when a child suffers, or even when somebody's beloved pet gets hit by a car? But broken hearts are what give us strength and understanding and compassion. A heart never broken is pristine and sterile and will never know the joy of being imperfect.
I am so blessed to have lived long enough to have my hair turning gray, and to have my youthful laughs be forever etched into deep grooves on my face. So many have never laughed, and so many have died before their hair could turn silver.

As you get older, it is easier to be positive. You care less about what other people think. I don't question myself anymore. I've even earned the right to be wrong.

So, to answer your question, I like being old. It has set me free. I like the person I have become. I am not going to live forever, but while I am still here, I will not waste time lamenting what could have been, or worrying about what will be. And I shall eat dessert every single day. (If I feel like it ... )

Thursday, September 06, 2007

A friend of mine made a spectacular video while out in Texas at the World Hang Gliding competition in Big Springs. You should see the windmills! !

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

As you know, I still love to take pictures. Even after the years of taking over a quarter million a year for portraits, for church directories. I really enjoy the art of it, and the timing, and being in the moment. You might remember on my birthday post, that I posted a picture of a moth that just happen to show up. Well, guess what,,,,,,, it is now published and is copyrighted. Pretty proud of it. It's my first. Hope it isnt the last.

Thank you for your work in support of this project.
Kelly C. Lotts
USGS National Biological Information Infrastructure Big Sky Institute,
Montana State University

By now, you also know that I love motorcycles. These links showed me a new way of looking at them. I would never have any desire to own one of them, because I love mine. However, for some people these will be a great alternative ! ! I predict that we will see a lot of them in the future. If they keep the price down, that is. They are just Cool !

Monday, September 03, 2007

Wendy took this as I was suiting up today. Darn camel back tube hides sometimes, but it is invaluable in the air, so put up with it we must.
Not a bad looking launch, considering the 0-2mph tailwind we were having to deal with later in the day. Despite that fact, I was still able to tweak out about 45 minutes. I thought that I was going to have a sledder, until I hit a bubble for a low save. I needed to launch 2-3 hours earlier, however dead batteries, her not getting off work and home,etc.. prohibited it. It was a challenging day for me. The guys earlier had no problems at all getting up, and most got to cloud base. Greg Heckman, the soaring guru, got about 5 hours today. grrrrr. I'll get in the same air with him sometime soon I hope !

This is my girlfriend/roommate Wendy. Today was a special day for her, and one I don't think she will ever forget. She took her first tandem flight here at Lookout Mtn. with Rex at the helm. The next couple of pics are of her flight. Glider's a little big on her, huh?! :^)

I hope that you can tell from this shot, that Rex had her at ease long before the flight. He has a great way of putting discovery people in the right frame of mind. With laughter, and solid instruction. They do 1,500 discovery flights here a year. I don't know how many of those that he does, however I do know most of them have a great treat. I know she did.

The climb out, with "Kid Dave" flying the Moyes dragonfly. If you get to catch one of his stand up comedy routines, it is well worth it. Aside from being a fantabulous tug pilot, he is also a professional comedian. He has opened for the likes of Ron White and many others. Funny guy!

Over the mountain in this one. I guarantee the view is better where they are ! And cooler also.

Coming in hot over the gazebo for a great landing.

The smile on the faces after the first flight tells it all. Some of the other pilots around us while she was doing her flight, told me it wasn't a smart thing to do. To get her a flight might mean that would have to take up the sport herself, if she fell in love with it. Then I would loose my driver, ha ha! But you know what,,,,, I had to do it anyway. And she understands fully now, why we love to do this so much. Hope that means I get to take off sometimes when it's flyable, ha ha!

Thanks alot to Matt Tabor, and all of the Lookout folks for a great time today.

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Lookout Mtn. Flight Park had a grand party for Labor Day. We had bar-b-que, hot dogs and all the trimmings with some desserts. There was also 2 kegs of pale ale for the night also. "Just Reeves band" was on hand so that we could dance the night away. This was a double purpose party. One for Labor day, and the other was a fund raiser for the Dade County Mountain Rescue organization. It was announced later by Doris, and Sheriff Cannon, that we had raised over $1,500.00 last night alone! Great Job.

Here was see the Captain of the Rescue team saying thanks to everyone for their generosity.

This is party of the crowd taking a break from the dancing, during the speeches.

Ann had 2 girlfriends in town for the holiday weekend. Kay and Lily are the nice looking ladies with the great tans....oh wait, they are Persian, nevermind, hahaha. What great dancers, and funny ladies they were. Come back and visit soon ! Rick 3 and Rick Sr. just had to get in the middle of these beauties, by crickey. It's Steve Irwin's 1 year anniversary since his death. Just a little plug for the Mate. Thank goodness for re-runs ! Can you tell that I'm watch the Croc Hunter? ha ha

Sunday night was a follow up get together. There was still a keg left from saturday night, so it went well with the crawfish bisque, and left over hotdogs and barbque. About 40 people showed up tonight. Doris and Toni did a great job, as always. I had forgotten about the get together until late, and by the time that I got there, the bisque was Gone, dang it! Hope everyone had a funn and safe Labor day! ! ! !

Saturday, September 01, 2007

This was just written up in an Atlanta paper, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. It's about a news reporters account of his first hang gliding experience. It mentions a couple of local pilots & instructors by name. I particularly like James Andersons comment about "old pilots"~! priceless. Check it out

We had a great party tonight for Labor day, at the flight park. I will post pictures, and a story about it tomorrow. I'm afraid that it might not be coherent if I wrote it tonight !