Nothing says welcome back to work like a six and a half hour flight. The sun went down a hours ago and I'm almost at destination. The ATIS winds on the ground are fourteen gusting twenty, not a big deal, but we're making slow progress towards the airport. There's a calculator on the GPS that tells me the wind strength and direction. It's not perfect, because it makes assumptions about the true air speed from the groundspeed on various headings, but it's okay. It tells me we have 40 knots of wind exactly on the nose. How does the wind know to blow exactly from where we want to go?
There's a layer of cloud forming underneath us. I hope it's not low enough to be fog. The night runway isn't the same as the one that has the working ILS at the moment, so an instrument approach would have to be a circling. I don't want to be doing a night circling approach in low visibility.
The clouds are less in the area of the airport and at least the headwind means I can go straight in and get a rapid descent. The reported wind is forty degrees off the runway, and that's about right. I'm down and on and taxiing quickly, because for arcane reasons, probably not related to witchcraft, the customer needs the airplane perfectly stationary by 0415Z. I set the brakes with about thirty seconds to spare. And we thought we were going to be early.
I broke my New Year's resolution, the one about not eating bad chocolate, with a Reese's Peanut Butter cup at 2:30 in the morning. Don't let this be encouragement to anyone else to shirk on their resolutions. I did do over a hundred and fifty push ups this morning. (Spread out over five separate sets, not all at once). Rowr!