Wednesday July 31st 2002

Student Pilot LicenseI got my medical certificate second class and student pilot certificate at lunch time today. I was a little nervous going to see the doctor, who knows what he would find. But in the event it was a breeze. A urine sample (I guess to check for diabetes), eyesight check with and without my glasses, peripheral vision check using a coat hanger that he waved behind my ears, a hearing check which was simply repeating numbers he said while standing behind me, standing on one leg with my eyes closed and then listening to my heart and lungs and a final blood pressure check. All that and $80 and I got a little yellow card that is my certificate to learn to fly.

Tonight I installed and started the Cessna Pilot Center (CPC) software. I was very pleasantly surprised at how good these classes were. Basically, there is a flow chart that has every step from the very beginning to the final check ride. It alternates between classes you complete at home and actual flying lessons. The classes are basically watching video presentations then answering different questions on the material, usually some twist on multiple choice. If you get an answer wrong it takes you right back to watch the section of the video again that deals with that topic. It tracks your progress and you save this on a floppy disk that comes with the kit. The sections on the actual flying lessons tell exactly what the flight will cover, what you should know after you done and then does a preview video of the actual flight. I completed the first two lessons and the first flight which just about brings me up to date ready for tomorrows flight. I also got in some practice with the new rudder peddles for FS2002 and made some progress – the simulator is good but the speed on the ground is much harder to control than in the real plane.