There is time for a Seagull flight before I go home, but the chief pilot has been up most of the night at the hospital, and says he is not fit to fly. This scores more points with me, because it indicates the company's safety culture. The boss doesn't press him for a moment, despite the fact that it is pretty inconvenient, and the boss says he'll take me flying, at which point the chief pilot elects to go along as a passenger.
We go out to the flight line, walk around the airplane. It has a pilot relief tube, something I've coveted for a few years of landing cross-legged. The boss hasn't hired a female before, and this is one of those rare cases in employment where having the boss think about your personal anatomy as part of the hiring process actually makes sense. I know I can manage with products like the TravelJohn, but he's come up with a solution that he thinks is better for everyone. The airplane type already has one passenger seat that hides a toilet, so he's going to re-install those. Zipper placement on the flight suits might be more of an issue if the manufacturer hasn't thought of anatomical variations. Mr. Seagull indicates that the flight suit manufacturer has placed safety over anatomical convenience, giving as an example the fact that the forward hip pockets are actual pockets not open at the bottom. "Ah yes," I indicate my understanding, "So you can't get at the things in your regular pockets." That, too, he admits, but the primary inconvenience is that when you're a guy, sitting for any period of time, sometimes things need adjusting, and that's difficult to do in a flight suit. Flying is a full body job. It's a feminist cry that unless a job actually requires a penis or a vagina it should be open to all, and I don't disagree. I'm just amused that I am coming on board in an operation where the equipment I will be operating actually has a penis-to-airframe interface. I think I can improvise a female-to-male adaptor for it, though.
I take the left seat and we go for a short local flight, where I do some standard manoeuvres and I would discuss the rest of the flight but instead I will report a conversation from the day before.
Me: I guess I have one more question. You know I keep a blog. I don't name companies, coworkers, customers or anything that I think could place the company in a bad light, are there any aspects of your operation that ...
Him: No, you can't blog about this.
That also explains the Xs, Ys and Qs you might have wondered about in the previous post about potential work locations. I'll still tell you stories, I'll let you know what I'm learning, and perhaps the friend of Mr. Seagull who connected me with this company will have a chance to explain that my style reveals nothing, and get my leash loosened, but as a show of good faith I'm cutting off here, even though it was an interesting flight.
I went back to the passenger terminal and flew home, expecting to be called for a contract in a month and a half or so. My houseguest has forgiven me for abandoning her, but hasn't been as successful this week as I have. And there waiting for me at home is a very polite rejection letter from the previous company that interviewed me. That's good in a way. Never being told is like never finding the body.