I hadn’t flown in about a month so needed to practice take-offs and landings. General Yeager said he would rate my landings.
As I taxied out, I listened to AWOS – 250 degrees, 6 knots – and headed to runway 3-2.
As I took the position, I heard someone calling approach in the opposite direction. I called, You do realize I am taking off. Do you see me?
Plane: Just doing approach, no problem we see you.
Me: Oh. I see you. So you’re not landing.
I waited for him to pass a bit more overhead and took off, vaguely wondering what landing challenges I might have. I had gotten into a habit of flaring too high and letting it settle into the right height. Not a good method.
I had finally made myself get lower and was doing well Oct 10.
Then Oct 12, former, recent, bad habit – the wind was 15-20 right down the runway and it caused regression.
General Yeager shook his end good-naturedly after we had taxied in. “Why do you do that?”
I shook my head. I didn’t keep up my speed. Dumb. Distracted by the big headwind instead of just flying.
Today, I flew by myself. First landing, I made myself go lower. I landed on two wheels, bounced and then landed…and landed…and landed. I was fully conscious of each movement and was never feeling on the edge. The bounces were not porpoising or problematic. It was almost enough of a bounce though to add a little power.
The second landing wasn’t bad – three pointer – but then a gust of wind pushed my left wing up, headed me left. I put in left aileron, held control, and it was fine.
I taxied back to the middle line stopped.
After I checked the trim and the cockpit, I took off again.
I sorted out my pattern, came in at a nice slow speed, flared well, three point landing by kissing the ground and staying down. Stopped in time to turn off at the first turn-off.
General Yeager asked me how I did. He was really asking how I felt I did. I said First two not so good, last one just right.
He said, “Your second one was a good three-pointer.”
Me: Until the gust got me.
General Yeager smiled. We both knew – I corrected, what’s my worry?