Getting my private plane license by Howard Metz
Like most young boys, I first became interested in planes at a very early age but had thoughts of making something that I could fly around in when I was 9 (had thoughts of putting wings on my bike).
I was 16 and when I had my first flying lesson at Hawthorne flight school in California and flew with an instructor in an old Cessna 140. I did not really like the instructor and did not try again for a few months.
After that I met a Western Airlines Lead Mechanic at Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) who by coincidence gave lessons at the same school at the Hawthorne airport flight school.
I won't say much about the first plane I flew being the Cessna 140, when I finally got going it was in Cessna 150's.
When ready I tried to get my Private Check-ride a couple of times in the spring of 1970. During that period there were many days, areas close to the ocean in Los Angeles would be plagued with low clouds and visibility.
I had three Check-rides cancelled due to this until finally on May 27th of that year when I took my ride with the Check Pilot. Strangely enough the Inversion Layer with low clouds was still present ... but I got my private license.
I was told that the Check Pilot had a drinking issue but was supposedly one of the best. Well, may I say, I definitely did smell booze on this guy in the close quarters of the Cessna 150!. Being I am and never been a drinker, this did bother me a bit as you can imagine; but this guy was right on his game. I guess some people can sometimes pull it off.
On the same day with the inversion later so strong, around 7pm, the skies went totally clear and I called one of my buddies that told me he wanted to be the first to go up once I got my license and we did a night flight to Burbank Airport for dinner. It was absolutely AMAZING!
I had my private pilot license at 17.
Now as a seasoned pilot I am acutely aware of what makes a good pilot watch and have put that knowledge and experience into my own brand of pilot watch which you can see here.
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