Exciting new airfields visited

The season is in full swing and the last couple of days has been busy. Ask any pilot and they will always be excited to visit a new airfield. Different scenery, different scenario, new challenges are always welcome. Some of the airfields that I visited in the last couple of days here in eastern Zambia are Mwanya where I am based, Kapamba, Jeki, Mpika, Shiwa Ngandu, Luawata, Mwaleshi, Royal and the international airports Mfuwe and Kenneth Kaunda in Lusaka.

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Getting chased up a sausage tree by an elephant

In the bush, there’s a slight catch 22. You have to be slightly fit, to become fit. Not having a flight to do that day I decided it would be good to go for a jog as I haven’t done an exorbitant amount of cardio and the effect of the daily fresh bread’s impact on my waistline was lingering in the back of my mind. I was joined by the director’s daughter who is definitely more fit as she recently completed a three-day MTB race. Out here we also always try to move in groups, so I was glad someone with more experience in this environment could join me. Read more

Two Tom’s in a Cessna 210 over the magnificent Namib

Every once in while a VIP shows up and this time it was my turn to be the VIP’s personal pilot for the day. It was strange that the company gave me these flights, as they were usually done by the experienced freelance pilots who have thousands of hours flight time over the whole of Namibia in bush planes. Film crew and scouts are notorious for being scared of small aircraft and typically request two experienced pilots on an aircraft for which one pilot is the norm.

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Validation in progress

So I’ve been told that the airlaw exams can sometimes be a tricky one to pass over here. But not for the reasons you might think. They are not too difficult to pass, but one just hopes that the person marking your paper aligns the memorandum correctly. In spectacular bureaucracy fashion, I went all out and wrote word for word what they required for the open book section. It left me writing 5 full pages and a slight carpal tunnel syndrome in my right wrist.

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