Saturday, January 1, 2011

A Real Surprise Christmas Present The Airport, Flying, & Doing It Again Santa Paula Airport

 Written: Sunday, December 19, 2010

I had no start in this whole Christmas present episode, except I told my kids that their dad missed flying. Steve had done this all before. This is a small town with an active, small, but famous airport. Many young men and some young women got jobs early-on in the early 50's and 60's.  Yes, even before that, because my dad also earned his way to get his pilot's license before he could drive legally. Steve wanted to fly and he as a real young boy worked throwing the newspapers and saving all his money so he could learn to fly and flew at age 12! He finally received his pilot's license when he was just 16 years-old.
This is the only picture of my husband and his really,
really red beard. Does he look happy? Oh yeah, he was!

 Steve's solo flight, not his first solo. His first time was many years earlier.

He started up his flying again when a friend told him he really needed to continue his dream and fly. Steve took some lessons in Santa Paula as a young father and then flew at the Oxnard Airport because he wanted to fly in a bigger airplane than Santa Paula had available at that time. Steve did this all in the mid-1970's  and it was when we had all these little children and babies. I don't know how our Stake President knew about his flying, but he told Steve he was risking so much by flying when he had the great responsibly of having and raising a family. He explained that he felt there was a risk he might crash and the babies and I would be left alone to fare for ourselves. If the Stake President tells you this, you listen and Steve quit. He had finished his solo and it was over. I could tell he was really sad.

Santa Paula's airport is known locally, as The Antique Airplane Capitol of the World. It was built in the late 1920's but was destroyed by flood and then another was built by right near Santa Clara River bed by a group of ranchers. The airport is still small, but hangers are always a very sought investment. The airport even has an open house on the first Sundays of each month for airplane enthusiasts to see a huge museum of really unique airplanes. No wonder so many are in awe of flying. The airport doesn't have a tower or radio. No one is suppose to land at night or fly over the town to land. The sound of airplanes is a normal part of our everyday white noise, as a train coming through town everyday and a train whistle. Another wonderful part of the airport is that it's a real community and so very safe. The people who fly here are real experts and experts at safety. My Steve would know, he is a firefighter and the airport is in his sector.

I know my children knew about their dad wanting to fly again, but they hadn't said anything to me or to him about a gift, or even hinting at flying again.

I hadn't thought about what my children were going to get their dad for Christmas at all. I had been worrying about packing, getting all our things together to be warm enough to wear when we go to Utah, and the big thing was preparing spiritually to speak on baptism for Dean while we're back in Salina.

I had even posted about my experience and love of The Savior while reading The Book of Mormon.  I said, "I love the Book of Mormon. As I read...I prepared myself for 3rd Nephi. I know the joy of truly feasting on the Scriptures." I was reading about baptism in my bed and under the covers with a finger in my ear and holding my hand-held mobile app. with my other hand. I had to hold my finger in my ear and then take it out to scroll down each time I read ten or so .. scriptures. Steve was listening to a local radio station and I think it was Tim Conway Jr. and it wasn't loud, but I wanted to really concentrate. Steve was snoring, so I didn't want to wake him to turn his radio off.

I became so sleepy, but I finished my reading and set my phone to the side with a plug on my phone to  Bose speakers to drown-out the talk radio with soft music, and I promptly fell asleep.

First thing in the morning ... and I mean about 6:00 a.m. I got a call on my phone. I was a bit awake, but drowsy. The phone call was from Dustin and he asked me a question. I asked, "What?" Yes, he was on my speakers. He asked, "Can Dad hear me?" I said, "Wait a minute..." Steve unplugged my phone and I stuck my finger in my ear and told him it was okay, Dad couldn't hear now. Steve busted-up laughing and I realized what I had done. Did I think that Dustin's voice was going to come-out my other ear? I was way more sleepy than I was aware and really shouldn't have been talking to anyone. Honestly, I even text in my sleep and it for sure doesn't make any sense. Huh, Bree?

All I know is Dustin wanted me to watch his children for just a couple minutes during the morning. I think he told me about the "airplane thing" but I don't remember. Dustin was here at our house in just a couple of minutes took his Dad to the airport and gave him the present from all our children. New training, new classroom time, and an "do-over" so my Steve could try this all again. I might add my husband was really surprised, really happy, thinking and thinking ... and thinking ... this is "his time to fly"

Maybe it's my time to get my shawl, just commit me.

I know this is this includes The feelings of all of us right now:
Larin excitedly said, "My dad will be flying
again after 30 year break. Merry Christmas dad!!!"

1 comment:

Breeda said...

It scares the freakin' crap out of me!!!

You make me laugh about plugging your ear hahahaha. love it!