Tom Horne Archive
They’re called churrascarias. I think that’s Portugese for “carnivore temple.” You go in, sit down, and pretty soon here comes a waiter with a huge spit of meat. You take a slice. He comes back again. You take another slice. This goes on until you turn on the “no mas” indicator on your table. No kidding. And even then, the guy keeps coming back at what seems like one-minute intervals. It’s a veritable river of meat. This keeps up until you either die of a burst stomach or urgently signal for the bill.
I took home a card showing all the meat cuts. It’s a meat road map. Now I can tell you what I ate: filet mignon, rump ( I don’t speak Portugese, so I just nodded when he said “Lagarto”), neck meat, and hump. That’s the large blister-o-meat on the back of a bull’s neck. Washed it down with a thimble of “43″–a Spanish herb liquere.
Aboard were Embraer captain Luiz Cesar, communications strategy advisor Danial Bachmann, and flight test engineer Maximilian Kleinubung. Kleinubung wanted me to do some 5- and 3-degree banked turns for auopilot data, but that wasn’t to be, as we’ll see.
The flight gave me a chance to fly the G1000 Prodigy avionics, which featured a test version of SVS and HITS imagery/cues. Got in two instrument approaches–both in anger (i.e. real IFR weather, not rage at the approaches themselves)–an ILS to Campinas Airport, an an RNAV back into SBGP. There was turbulence, but the P100 rode it well. The onboard Garmin radar served us well, too.
The trip to Campinas was vector-laden and procedurally complicated, and the weather helped in setting me to make peace with the G1000 in a high-workload environment. You can’t beat this kind of dual.
All the vectoring, and a low approach, made us burn up a lot of fuel in the fuel-unfriendly low-altitude environment. So there was no time for stalls or single-engine work. Let along the autopilot data. So it was up to 340 for some cruise numbers, then back to SBGP. In all, a great way to spend the day. And a fine airplane.
By tomorrow, the front is supposed to pass to the northeast, and skies will hopefully clear well enough for those stalls and V1 cuts.
So add one more to the growing list of the world’s shuttered downtown airports.
We’re covering the Tempelhof closing online, and hope you’ll check out the story and video of an ILS approach (in VFR conditions) that I made to runway 27L last year, as part of our anti-user-fees initiative. Even flew between those apartment buildings, just like the DC-3s and -4s that shot the same gap during the Airlift.
What do you think of this closure? Anybody out there ever flown into Tempelhof, flew in the famous Berlin Airlift to Tempelhof in 1948-49, or served there when it was an Air Force base?
Enjoy these three videos, testimony to a grand airport in world and aviation history.
Click here if the video won’t play.
Click here if the video won’t play.
Click here if the video won’t play.
“Are you crazy, flying that dinky airplane/riding that motorcycle? Don’t you know you can crack your skull open that way?”
Of course I know. And yet, I do it again and again. Why?
A new book, Bodies in Motion: Evolution and Experience in Motorcycling, by Steven L. Thompson, a good friend and former executive editor of AOPA Pilot, goes into the reasons why we pilots (and motorcycle drivers) are drawn to the kicks of our very special pursuits. And it’s not because we’re crazy. Rather, Thompson posits that our need for psychokinetic thrills is rooted in human evolution. In short, humans evolved from apes, which swung from trees and so became adapted to–and enjoyed the sensations that accompany–the g-forces, hand-eye coordination, and odd attitudes that attend this kind of body-motion.
Fast-forward to modern man. What kid doesn’t like spinning around until he/she is so dizzy that he/she falls down? Or swinging on “monkey bars”? It’s the same thing when we get older, have a bit more money, and still want to live on the edge. Admit it, you like steep turns–in the air and on the ground. And aerobatics? ‘Nuff said.
Of course, social aspects also creep in, Thompson says. Just as some are drawn to Harleys, some to Suzukis, and some to BMWs, so are some pilots drawn to Bonanzas, Mooneys, Cessnas, or radial-engined classics. But Thompson makes an argument that pure physical sensations are at work, too. In Bodies in Motion, there’s an appendix that quantifies the vibration levels at the handlebars, seats, and foot pegs of various motorcycles. You could do the same study for airplanes, I suspect.
Different strokes for different folks. Whether you like the buzz of a crotch rocket, the purr of a Goldwing, the rumble of a radial, or the shriek of an MU-2, you’re bound to enjoy reading Thompson’s intellectual musings on why we do what we do. They don’t call them “ape-hangers” for nothing!
P.S. When I’m riding, I like to stick my head down so I can see past the fairing and watch the front wheel pump up and down as it takes the bumps. When flying, I like to look back and sneak a peek at the tail. Looks odd, in a leaving-things-behind kind of way. And takeoffs always give me a charge….
The five-day schedule involved seminars every day, and there was even an exhibition hall with booths representing Garmin, Honeywell, Pratt & Whitney, and many other companies. I went to give a talk about large-droplet icing and ice-induced tailplane stalls. Even at 7:30 a.m. I had a good crowd.
AOPA ASF’s Bruce Landsberg gave a talk about ASF’s initiatives, such as their popular online safety courses.
The trip up and back was memorable, too. The trip from our home base at Frederick, Maryland, to TVC included a flight through a large patch of clouds–some of them featuring moderate rainfall–and an ILS approach to TVC. Flight Service put a huge convective sigmet around most of Michigan, but all I could see on Tom Haines’ Bonanza’s Garmin 530 datalink view was some yellow in a sea of green returns. With no contouring cells, and no Stormscope strikes, I decided to keep on truckin’. There were a couple of bumps, but mostly it was rain–and an 800-foot ceiling in rain for the arrival at TVC.
Coming back, I caught a 20-knot tailwind and saw groundspeeds as high as 194 knots. At last–a decent tailwind! Of course, the trip would have been even faster in a TBM, but that’s another story.
Bottom line: TBMOPA is an impressive organization, full of dedicated owners. I’ll be back for next year’s convention, at Tuscon.
Member George Shanks wrote me to emphasize that most RNAV (GPS) approaches with the “T”-style entry paths to the FAF are also exempt from holding. “If the approach is in the “T” or inverted “L” format and fly-by waypoints are in use … it would not be necessary to use the course reversal pattern.”
Jose Riera has a good question: “If a holding pattern is depicted at the FAF, you are required to make one turn around before resuming your course inbound to the runway. Can you tell me why this is?”
Personally, I don’t know. Maybe it has to do with steering clear of obstacles or terrain. All I know is that most times you’ll be on vectors from ATC, and a hold-in-lieu-of PT would be unlikely. Which is good, because let’s face it, most of us just don’t want to hold …..
Anybody else with views on holding at the FAF?
Erb sent me a link that you can use to send in your vote to preserve the airport as a UNESCO world heritage site. Here it is:
Fill it out and send it in. It’s the most we can do at this point.
How ironic that Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama used the Berlin Airlift so often in his recent speech in Berlin. Without once referring to the airport that made it possible. Anyway, here’s a way to make your voice heard on the matter.