Wednesday, May 16, 2012
The Empire Will Be Pleased
The title is what my coworker said through his Darth Vader oxygen mask as we descended from the flight levels in an unpressurized airplane after completing a tricky piece of work. We descended overhead Banff, Alberta. It is so spectacularly beautiful there that I was distracted from the work I was supposed to be doing. I was even raving about the remarkable pointiness and ridginess and beauty of the scenery to the air traffic controller. The air traffic controller was meanwhile excited by the fact that I could still talk to him. We went from the flight levels to dodging in and out of those spectacular stripey peaks and we still had excellent two way radio communications. And then we landed at Springbank. Springbank is the Buttonville of Alberta. Screaming busy with training traffic, and controllers who tell you what you want instead of listening to what you requested. The best was the one who gave me an instruction to turn right, and then chewed me out for deviating from the straight out departure clearance I had been given. Such a startling contrast from the service I got from the very next controller they handed me off to. I cannot turn right and go straight at the same time, although with some of the aerial work I do it almost seems that way. If you have the opportunity, you should go to Banff and fly around at about 11,000' in the spring. I think you should put it on your bucket list. I'm a not a stranger to mountains, Banff just seems to have especially amazing ones.