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"We are the protagonists of our stories called life, and there is no limit to how high we can fly."

PHD. MBA. MHS. Type rated on A350, A330, B777, B747-400, B747-200, B757, B767, B737, B727. International Airline Pilot / Author / Speaker. Dedicated to giving the gift of wings to anyone following their dreams. Supporting Aviation Safety through training, writing, and inspiration. Fighting for Aviation Safety and Airline Employee Advocacy. Safety Culture and SMS change agent.

Friday, July 29, 2011

Ronald Neumeister: Friday’s Fabulous Flyer

Lieutenant Colonel. Aviation Brigade Commander vice Brigadier commander. Warrant Officer. First Officer. Full Colonel...

I had the great opportunity to meet Ron, as he was the partner in crime with Bruce Achertling—my 'small world' captain—who gave me a ride home two weeks ago on my 30th anniversary. Talk about the talent in the flight deck! Sun Country is the airline to fly if these aviators are examples of the quality of pilots they hire.

Ron joined the Marine Corps in 1981 and flew helicopters until he left in 1987. But he didn’t go far from the military as he joined the Army National Guard 1988 while he pursued his flying career. He earned is commercial and, single engine and multi-engine ratings.

His flying career took him to Zantop from 1990-1991 until he was furloughed, at which time he returned to the military and spent the next 4 ½ years as Airfiled Commander at Camp Ripley, MN.

Thanks to the “flying itch” Ron set out to pursue a flying career again. In the mid to late 90’s he went to flight safety in St. Louis, and for $10,000 he got himself checked out in a Jetstream. At the same time he was working part time in the National Guard.

The flight safety program was the direct path to Chicago Express in 1997 where he lived the commuters dream making $1000 per month in 1999. He made Captain in about 5 months, flew for about a year and a half and then he moved on to Sun Country. Another casualty of 9/11/ he was furlough from Sun Country and returned to Chicago Express for a short while as an F/O on a Saab 340.

In 2001 he became a Lieutenant Colonel, and went to the Air Guard full-time

He ventured back to active duty from 2003 through October 2004, until Sun Country called him back.

2000 he flew a King Air in Iraq. In March 2009 he flew another King Air to Afghanistan—8200 miles! 2013 he’s going back to fly the plane again, with the hope of flying a Blackhawk!

His 30 years in the military found him promoted to Aviation Brigade Commander vice Brigadier
commander, but now he’s flying he’s a Warrant Officer for the military, and a First Officer for Sun Country. His military retirement will honor him as a full Colonel, and hopefully his airline retirement will find him as a Captain.

The title Ron retires with means nothing compared to the life he lives today. He's serving our country and safely delivering his passengers to their destinations.

Behind every great man is a woman kicking his butt, loving him unconditionally and if he's lucky... she's a Rock Star. And Ron is definitely a very lucky man for many reasons, but mostly to share his life with his wife Kathy.

Ron, it was great to meet you! Thank you for bringing me home for my 30th anniversary. I hope the next time you and Bruce are in Seattle that you'll let me know and I can make dinner for both of you.

Enjoy the Journey!

~ Karlene

Wednesday, July 27, 2011


I received an interesting question from my friend Bob.

I have a question for all you pilots, including the airline types. I am working on the transition to the 2012 flight plan from the air traffic management side. Significant changes to flight data processing systems will be necessary. Curious to know the level of awareness within the pilot community. Has information on the 2012 changes been filtering down to you guys yet?”


Have any of you heard of these changes?

Bob further states, “You all do not have to be on the new ICAO FPL until Nov 2012 but the transition will occur throughout 2012. Australia is planning to join the AsiaPac transition in mid-2012. It will be particularly messy for international operations during the transition period because some States will be able to process the new FPL and others will not. I expect airlines will wait till the last minute to switch over. I think there is also a big wait and see attitude out there because it will not be an inexpensive change.”

Bob was kind enough to send me the background, and summary of changes:


The changes are considered an important enabler for the use of advanced CNS capabilities. They address air navigation functionalities and technologies such as reduced vertical separation minimum (RVSM), performance-based navigation (PBN), required communication performance (RCP), automatic Dependent Surveillance - Broadcast (ADS-B) and global navigation satellite systems (GNSS).

The flight plan changes provide the ability to distinguish air traffic on the basis of more specific CNS capabilities, hopefully allowing for improved traffic management processes and procedures.

The new flight plan is also considered an interim step towards the implementation of the Global ATM Operational Concept.

Summary of Changes:

The majority of the changes occur within:

Field 10 (equipment and capabilities)

Field 18 (other information) to indicate more detail on aircraft and pilot capabilities.

There is also a requirement to process “date of flight” in the new FPL. Aircraft operators will be able to file a FPL up to 120 hours in advance. Some minor changes occur within other fields.

Field 10 Changes

Field 10 will now show not only the equipment carried by the aircraft, but it will also show operational capabilities relating to aircraft and flight crew certifications. Because of the number of possibilities for communications, navigation and surveillance capabilities, 2-character, alphanumeric indicators have been specified.

Currently, only single letter indicators are used in field 10.

If certain capabilities are entered in field 10, details of the capabilities must be amplified in field 18.

Field 15 Changes:

Bearing and distance can be specified from defined waypoints, not just NAVAIDS.

Bearing values may be specified in degrees true when operating at high latitudes.

Note: The field 15 changes will not impact my A330. Modern day FMS technology has the ability to program waypoints utilizing Bearing/Distance, and the adaptation of TRUE at high latitudes.

Field 18 Changes:

New indicators added:

SUR/ = Surveillance applications or capabilities not shown in field 10
DOF/ = Date of flight if more than 24 hours in the future
PBN/ = Performance based navigation capabilities
DLE/ = En route delay or holding
TALT/ = Takeoff alternate
ORGN/ = Originators AFTN address if not readily identified

Several field 18 indicators can only include standard coded information designators.

Other Changes:

Field 13b (EOBT) to be included in CNL, CHG, ARR, RQS and RQP messages
Field 18 to be included in CNL, DLA, CHG, DEP, RQS and RQP messages

Bob says, “If you have any questions, I'll try to answer them. Obviously, the biggest impact will be on flight planning and dispatch but pilots will probably need to be aware of new terms and the fact that notification of certain "capabilities" may be linked to pilot training and certification requirements.”

Thank you Bob for keeping us updated on the up-and-coming changes! Everyone please feel free to leave your comments, suggestions and questions for Bob. He's the man in the know.

Enjoy the Journey!

~ Karlene

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Should I quit College to Fly?

I received the following question from a future pilot who has passion, a love of aviation, but is facing a difficult decision on which path he shall travel:

My name is Lethukuthula Blessing Vilakazi

I'm 19 years old and I'm from South Africa. I grew up in a small town called Pietermaritzburg but I now study and live in Cape Town. Basically I'm writing to you because I need your advice.

My love affair with aviation started a few years ago when I took my first flight in a Jetstream 41 out of FAPM. Back then I obviously knew very little about aviation, all I did know is that I loved being in the air, it felt surreal, I felt as if I had left earth. It wasn't until a few months later that my love for aviation really grew.

While bored on youtube I stumbled across videos of Microsoft's Flight Simulator X, I was fascinated. I'd never seen anything like it, a few days later having never purchased a computer game before (because I had never owned a computer before my first year at University) I went out and got it. Needless to say I sucked at first, really badly but as the months went on I got better and my love for aviation grew stronger.

I'd like to think of myself now as a highly experienced and skilled simulator pilot with a great love for the 737NG.

When I first came across your blog months ago I noticed that you hold two masters degrees and that really stuck out at me because it came at a time when I was seriously considering dropping out of the best university in Africa to try and pursue a career in aviation.

I thought maybe it is possible to do both, get a degree and become a pilot. Lately though, it has become harder and harder to in a sense ignore my love for aviation. I get lost in it, I spend hours on sites such as, hours watching videos on youtube and JustPlanes DVDs, I spend even more time on my sim flying for the various virtual airlines.

Nothing quite calms like a ten minute JustPlanes teaser, I've watched my favourites hundreds of times and I keep watching them because I ALWAYS pick up something new, something that I hadn't noticed before, something that gives me more information about the DVDs I am yet to acquire.

What I would basically like to know is: How important is it to have a college degree as a pilot?

Today I changed faculties, I moved from commerce to humanities. I am now a Politics, Sociology and Social Anthropology Major. Proud to say that but as I walked out today having made the tough choice and given up my bursary to study what I enjoyed I couldn't help but feel that there was something missing, something that would make me even happier and that is simply aviation.

Lethukuthula, in the United States a college degree is essential for a career as an airline pilot. Supply and demand may vary that one day, but today ... if a pilot doesn't have a degree, they won't get hired by a major airline.

Must you have a degree to fly a plane? Of course not.

But an education will give you skills in how to learn, think outside the box, communicate, and will broaden your horizons.

When you're interviewing, and there is another pilot with the same flying experience as you, the other pilot with a college degree will get the job.

Piloting is more than stick-and-rudder these days. Leadership. Management. Communication. Understanding weather. Systems knowledge. Teaching. Computer programming. Reading. Writing. There are many skills you will learn in college that will carry over into your piloting career.

Airlines don't hire pilots... they hire captains. They hire leaders. They hire future instructors. Anyone can learn to fly a plane, but the associated skills are what will make you a great pilot, a safe pilot, an aviator that our future industry needs.

At 19, you have a long life ahead of you to fly. You can take flying lessons while attending college pursuing your studies.

The success and future of our industry and our world needs educated people. If you have the means... stay in school! One day you will thank me for this advice.

Does anyone else have any comments for Lethukuthula? I'm sure he would love to hear them.

Enjoy the Journey!

~ Karlene

747-400 Go Around Thrust!


Years ago, I was in the flight training portion of my check out on the Boeing 747-400 and we landing after a long flight from Tokyo, with 300 plus passengers.

I was flying from the right seat, my check airman was the pilot monitoring, and the augmented crew sat behind us—Four pilots working together to bring the aircraft safely to a landing. I was the new pilot, my captain and the captain in the jumpseat were both check airmen.

The tower departed aircraft in front of us, as we approached on final. As they rolled another plane onto the runway, I asked the guys, “Do you think we’re a little close?” My experienced instructors assured me that we were good. And they were right. We continued. Then ATC taxied yet another aircraft onto the runway. I said, “I don’t think…” and then ATC broke in and told us “... Go-Around.”

“Go around thrust, flaps fifteen, positive rate… gear up, heading select!” I moved the power forward and pressed the TOGA (Takeoff Go-Around power) button. We climbed, flew downwind for another landing and burned about 10,000 lbs of extra fuel. After touchdown ATC changed the runway direction due to the strong tailwind we experienced on both approaches.

Thankfully this type of experience in the flight deck is a non-event, because we are trained to follow procedures.

The question of “what does it feel like” was interesting. I had not thought about anything other than performing the task at hand. After the event, both captains told me they had never performed a missed approach in the actual aircraft before, in their combined 50 years of experience.

This is not a common occurrence in the big planes, but pilots practice numerous missed approach scenarios in their annual training events to make sure that they're prepared.

Pilot Technique:

Every approach I mentally prepare for the possibility of and talk through the missed-approach as part of my briefing. Not only where we'll navigate to and the altitude, but the procedure and sequence of power, gear, flaps, etc. I'm rehearsed and prepared in the unlikely event.

Do you have a technique that prepares you for the unexpected?

Enjoy the Journey!

~ Karlene

Monday, July 25, 2011

Monday Motivation: Trust

“We cannot expect to receive the trust of others,

if we are unable to trust in ourselves”


Not long ago I flew with a captain who shared a secret about the psychology of male pilots. He said, "We're all really just scared little boys and bury our fear deep within, allowing our ego to create our confidence. We create the confidence that we can, and then we go out there and do. Pretty soon, we are doing with success."

He also told me that some of those pilots have a yellow streak— meaning they hold within them that little bit of fear that anything can go wrong, and they always have a backup plan. Confident, but prepared. He said, "Those are the good pilots." The bad pilots allow their egos to fly their planes —fearlessly.

I told him that I thought that women pilots needed to know what they’re doing, before they did it. That we want to know that we can, before we do. Our ego doesn't precede our performance, but confidence in performance precedes the confidence in ourselves. Whereas male pilots fake it until they make it.

He said, “You don’t know you can do it, unless you do it.” That we need to trust in ourselves and know that we've had the training, have the ability, possess the talent...

Before we can be truly great, we must trust in ourselves.

From someone who spent his life teaching pilots how to fly a 747 around the world, this captain speaks from experience and with great wisdom. I'm thinking... words to live by.

You will be amazed at what you can accomplish if only you first trust in yourself.

Enjoy the Journey!

~ Karlene

Friday, July 22, 2011

Carter Wogen: Friday's Fabulous Flyer

On-time performance...

Life doesn't always work that way. Especially when there is a baby involved. Usually we're plagued with delays, but this time Carter made his appearance a week early! June 20, 2359, 2011.

36 hour labor, he was cleared for approach. But that little guy waited in a holding pattern for 8 hours in the hospital before he accepted that clearance. On final approach, 2 hours of pushing, and he joined the world.

21.5 inches long... when he fills out he will be a football player!

Carter paid his mother back for her 36 hours of labor with jagged breathing. I'm thinking that this flight was like running a marathon, and he was just out of breath. They moved him to the NICU to keep an eye on him for 48 hours.

IV coming out today. Antibiotics going away. He's going home tomorrow. Everyone is doing great!

And then there are update photos:

Enjoy the Journey!

~ Karlene

Thursday, July 21, 2011

A World of Threats

Communication, workload management, standard phraseology, planning, decision making, and CRM (Crew Resource Management), are a few of the “buzz” words tossed about the aviation industry that impact the management of a safe flight. Advancing beyond CRM the airline industry is training for Threat and Error Management. But T.E.M. is something that should be addressed for the private sector as well.

The core of Threat and Error Management is that we live in a world of threats. In the aviation world these threats include anything that could increase operational complexity such as lack of familiarity with an airport, weather, new equipment, fatigue, or any potential distraction. What has the potential to distract your operation today? Think about all the possibilities. A good habit for pilots to make is become aware of all potential threats prior to stepping into the plane.

We are human. And humans make mistakes. Our goal, as pilots, is to be proactive and identify the potential threats before they turn into errors. Remember an error is something that has already happened—something that needs to be managed. A threat is something that creates the potential to error. By properly managing the threats, we will mitigate the chance of errors.

Distraction is everywhere. Due to the current economy, furloughs, bankruptcies, mergers, worries about training or the threat of terrorism, we live in an ocean of stress. How do we manage that environment in which we live and work?

Focus. Make sure you get out of the ocean before the title wave hits by managing your flight before stepping into your aircraft. Never point your airplane someplace your brain hasn’t been five minutes before.

Preparation is the key to Success.

Awareness is the key to Preparation.

There has never been “one” error that has caused a crash, but multiple errors that led the flight crews down the wrong path. Get off that path. Look into the future. Learn from past mistakes. Become aware. This is a great way to live for all my earthbound friends too. Pay attention to what the potential threats could be, and work toward mitigating the possibilities before they turn into errors.

How do you manage the stress of life and maintain the ability to focus on your task at hand?

Enjoy the Journey!

~ Karlene

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Emalyn Hall: Why I Want to Fly

When Emalyn is not riding her horse, or hanging out at the Arlington Airport taking flights, she's busy making people smile. Emalyn is officially our youngest "Why I want to Fly" essay contestant. Oh wait... she wrote a poem. And what an incredible poem it is!

When I fly my spirits soar
Then I ask, may I fly some more
Flying is what I love
It makes me feel so free like a dove
Seeing the world from high above
If I could fly, whenever
Would I be on the ground, never!
Emalyn Hall
Emalyn and Teri Carpenter. Thank you Teri!

Emalyn and Brother Ethan

Enjoy the Journey!
~ Karlene

P.S. One more little pilot is still working his way down the runway. Taking flight soon.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Flight Instructors Wanted!

Trident Aircraft is looking is looking for 2-3, and perhaps more, flight instructors for their Navy contract.

Yes… you could be teaching Navy pilots how to fly!

Location: Gulf Shores, Alabama.

Trident conducts an abundance of primary flight training, and much of it is contracted to the Navy. Instructors working there have the ability to fly 60-80 hour a month—including being paid for the allotted ground time per lesson.

Imagine getting paid to fly six days a week building flight hours at the beach!

Their highest volume of students is from now until the end of the calendar year, and they are happy to have instructors for “2 months, 6 months, or indefinitely.” Since the Navy contract requires a high level of efficiency, they prefer instructors who have at least 50 hours of dual under their belt, but they are flexible if the right person knocks on their door.

If anyone is interested, please e-mail Katie your resume--, or call her at 251-948-3522.

Katie Christopher
Assistant Chief Flight Instructor
Trident Aircraft, Gulf Shores

This is a fantastic opportunity for anyone who wants to build hours, or for anyone who wants to do some fun flying for awhile.

Do you know anyone who would like to fly?
Do you have any questions for Katie?

If you decide this is an opportunity for you, keep in touch. There will be many stories to share.

Enjoy the Journey!

~ Karlene

Monday, July 18, 2011

Sundowner For Sale

Monday Motivation:

“My Life is Perfect—Appreciate everything and everyone in your life without doubt or expectations. Learn the way to set change in motion is to bless and feel grateful for even the most difficult parts of your life.” Author unknown.

Paul Sergeant is grateful his Sundowner stayed around long enough to complete his CFI-A and CFI-I without having to rent another plane. But he say’s, “it’s time for 49C to find another home.”

“A plane that is a step up to room and comfortable a very good useful load plus it is a delight to handle in the air. Those are just a few of the many reasons to choose a Beech Sundowner as your next airplane. Building time or travel cheap – the Sundowner lets you do both and not break your budget at the same time.” Flying

1983 Model Beechcraft C23 Sundowner N6349C, Serial number M2371.

Asking $55,000.00 OBO

N6349C is one of the best equipped Sundowners available. Serial Number M-2371 is one of the last Sundowners made, and was used as an instrument trainer by Executive Beechcraft in Missouri.

Paul purchased the aircraft in 2005 with a very low time engine and used it for his own commercial and CFI training and to carry his "growing" four person family around the United States. The only reason he's selling it is because that family just kept on growing and he upgraded to a V35A Bonanza.

In 2008 he replaced the original round dial steam gauges and upgraded to full IFR GPS capability, coupled to a STEC-50 autopilot with attitude hold. If that's not enough he’s got a dual LOC/GS ILS, KX-165 Nav/Com radio, ADF, DME and a WX-8 stormscope. "A serious IFR Cross Country Machine."

He also added the Power Flow STC for a tuned exhaust, adding 200 to 300 ft/min to the climb rate, and a top speed of 130kts. With full fuel and 1 person, moderate temperatures and starting at 600 ft MSL, an initial climb of 800 -1000 ft/min is not uncommon and well above book. He normally cruised at 2500 and 115 kts, buring 10.5 gallons per hour. Apparently the tail weight makes landing significantly easier than most C23's, and he's rarely had CG issues.

Specs & Equipment:

5500 TT on Airframe, 466 hrs SMOH on refurbished 0-360-A4K 180HP 4-cylinder engine S/N L24864-36A.

466 hrs on Propeller (Senseich 76EM8S5-O-60 s/n 29392K)

Stand-by Vacuum System

Heated Pitot

Dual Push to Talk on Yokes

Voice activated 2-Pl Intercom

Analog Clock

59 Gal. Fuel

Post Lights

Red Reading Light

Hand tow bar

Stand-by Vacuum System

Master avionics switch

Exterior Power Receptacle

Dual Brakes

Electric Vent Fan/blower

Rear seat ventilation system

Strobes w/ Strobe Beacon

1 Piece Windshield

Shoulder Restraints

Complete Logs

Dual Pilot Doors

External Paint – good (7), repainted in 1997

Internal Condition – good (8)


Annual October 2010 – no major squawks

New tires and ELT battery September 2010

Good compression on all 4 cylinders

IFR certification August 2009

AD’s complied with

No metal in oil

Contact: mobile: 214 708 5221

This motivated seller is even willing to paint it purple if needed. I’m thinking Darby should buy it, paint it pink and color the world happy.

Or some industrious person should do what Jason did—You could own this plane, build hours and have someone else pay for it. Click HERE to learn how. Do you know anyone who wants a great plane?

Enjoy the Journey!

~ Karlene

Friday, July 15, 2011

Bruce Achterling: Friday's Fabulous Flyer!

Bruce Achterling

Some days nothing goes right, but when that happens you just have go with the flow and realize there is always a reason for everything. This day was a day of connection. And not many Friday Flyers get quite the story behind them as this one.

Tuesday, 7/11/11, I was scheduled on a flight from Minneapolis to Seattle. Great news! I arrived at the airport three hours early— just in time to catch an earlier flight. Unfortunately the flight was oversold— but there is always the jump seat. Unfortunately it was taken by the FAA. No problem, I can hang out for three hours and get some work done. Then I realized my flight was delayed by four hours and departing at 9:30 p.m.— seven hours sit. No thank you.

Well, this happened to be my 30th anniversary, and I’m motivated to surprise my husband and get home before midnight. I checked flight tracker and Sun Country had a flight departing at 3 p.m. out of terminal two. That meant leave security, take the tram, connect to the train, back through security, and I made it to the gate with 15 minutes to spare. Oversold flight.

Captain Bruce Achterling comes out of the plane and introduces himself and welcomes me to join them in the flight deck. We began talking about jobs. When I said, “I used to work for you guys. Kind of. I was instructing for Premair and did some of your training.”

Bruce said, “Yeah, I was in Seattle about 10 years ago. There was a woman instructor who had us over for dinner. We had pasta. And she had some teenage daughters.”

No kidding? That was me! Is aviation a small world or what? What are the odds to cross paths in this manner ten years later?

While I was celebrating my 30 wedding anniversary— Bruce was celebrating his 30th Anniversary from leaving PATCO. The country lost an air traffic controller on that day, but the world gained an excellent pilot.

Bruce was hired in 1986 by Sun Country as a DC-10 Second Officer, but he also worked as a B727 Second Officer. In addition to flying, he was a training pilot. He upgraded to a First Officer and flew the right seat for about ten years. Then became a Captain on the DC-10 and flew left seat for another ten years.

October 2001 is when I first met Bruce. He remembers it had been close to Halloween, but had it been on Halloween he would have been eating a dead meat man instead of lasagna. He finished dinner— didn’t get sick, and continued on to earn his 737-type rating.

December 7, 2001, and all he had to finish was his line check to be fully trained. What should happen on that day? Bankruptcy. But thanks to a great Check Airman he received his line check from Milwaukee to Minneapolis and then Sun Country shut their doors. Six weeks later they started back up and Bruce was om the second class to come back.

Minnesota is Bruce’s long-time home where he lives with his 25-year-old daughter who is attending college and earning a degree in a “bio” field. His son, now 28, just entered the Navy. What an outstanding family and such a small world.

Bruce, it was GREAT to see you again! Excellent 737 piloting skills… maybe you had a great instructor. ;) Thank you so much for the flight home, and when you come back to Seattle… we’ll have dinner again!

Enjoy the Journey!

~ Karlene

Thursday, July 14, 2011

You're Invited!

Idaho Falls Younkin/Franklin Fundraiser

Time: Wednesday, August 17 10:00 a.m. - 10:00 p.m.

Location: Aero Mark XL (at the Idaho Falls Airport)
1940 International Way # 2
Idaho Falls, ID

Created by: Theresa R. Eaman

"An All-Day event planned to raise funds in conjunction with the Moonlight Fund for Kyle Franklin, husband of fallen wing-walker Amanda Younkin Franklin.

Amanda and Kyle were injured in a tragic accident in March, and Amanda survived for 76 days, ultimately passing from complications due to the extensive burns she received in the accident. Although Amanda is now in a better place, the bills remain and Kyle and the Younkins need our help. This event will give everyone an opportunity to lend a hand.

In the works are a Car Show featuring vehicles from several area car clubs, a Static Air Craft display and a catered dinner and auction with special entertainment in the works! (tickets purchased separately).

Access to the Car Show and Static Air Display will be by donation at the gate. Tickets for the dinner are limited and are available by emailing A purchase of a dinner ticket includes access to all events and displays. Tickets are $25 per person and the Dinner and entertainment times will be posted shortly as well as the list of entertainers.

Please click on AMANDA YOUNKIN FRANKLIN to learn more about the life and death of this angel.

I hope everyone will be able to make this great event in support of Kyle and the Younkin family. I'm not sure if my schedule will allow my attendance, but I am buying one lucky person a ticket to attend. Drawing will be made August 1st.

All you have to do is:
  • Sign up to follow my blog.
  • Leave a message for the family.
  • Tell us if you're planning on attending. If you can't attend, not to worry. A donation will be made in your name.
  • Make sure you come back August 1st to see if you've won the drawing.
Enjoy the Journey!
~ Karlene

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Olivia Fowler: Why I want to fly

Soaring above the clouds so free am I
I climb higher to try to reach the sun
I am so free flying up in the sky

Flying forever, I have so much fun

Fly over the land, fly over the sea

I fly to the cloud-filled land that I love

Ill never be captured, Ill always be free
To gaze down at trees and towns from above

In my little plane, with it’s big, strong wings

I fly all night long, and into day

For I am the queen, the queen of all things

I never could live any other way

I soar up above, way up in the sky

Oh, How terribly much I love to fly

Olivia was one of our why "I want to fly" essay/poem contestants, and her feelings of flight soar across the page. "I am so free." Those were my exact feelings when I first took to the sky.

Keep your passion alive Olivia. Follow your dreams and there is nothing you can't do. A beautiful poem and I'm honored to share it.

Enjoy the Journey!

~ Karlene

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

The Thrill of Flight

Where in the world is Amanda Sargent?

She started at Kodiak, AK at 11 am…
and ended up in Ketchikan, AK at 10 p.m. the same night.
1000 miles in one day!

Amanda says, “Yes, I’m nuts!"

Nuts Amanda, seriously?

"Single engine aircraft over 50 miles of open water
in Alaska is nuts… no two ways about it.”

Last I heard she was heading south to be in Portland, or further south the next day. That was a month ago. Amanda... where are you and what exciting things are you doing today?

Amanda... where are you?

Enjoy the journey... Amanda is!

~ Karlene

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Monday Motivation: Opportunity

"In the Middle of Difficulty Lies Opportunity"
Albert Einstein

August Money Motivation:

I'm giving $1000 to the person who finds a buyer that results in a closing.
Contact Peggy French at

Nestled in the cozy town of Anchorage Alaska lies my difficulty and your opportunity. 1997 I began my Northwest Airlines adventure as a 747 Second Officer. After three years of staying in hotels I purchased a condo as a crash pad.

As I've moved on to another carrier, I am selling this little bit of heaven.

2101 West 29th Anchorage Alaska

The living space on the main floor includes the kitchen and large living room. As you can see I had a dining table that sat six. This glass table is still in the unit and will be gifted to the lucky buyer if they're interested. Imagine a full size couch, large coffee table, two end tables, a desk, chair, book shelve, piano, bar table with two large bar stools and a corner plant stand in one room. The space is incredible.

The fireplace not only creates great ambiance, but the gas is included in the homeowners assessments. And while this unit has electric heat I was able to keep my unit heated with the fireplace and a low setting for the electric heat keeping the bills low.

While the MLS listing say's this is a 1 bedroom, 1 bathroom-- that statement is a legality issue. There are actually two sleeping rooms. The original condo had a large loft upstairs with that looked down to the living room, and a catwalk to the window that opened for emergency egress. The problem with this layout was that guests would walk through the sleeping area to use the bathroom. With every difficulty there is always a solution.

I built a wall and extended the floor above. I actually extended the catwalk to accommodate a small bed, shelves and a closet that once was the catwalk area. I created a hallway to the bathroom and laundry room. Saloon style doors add to the beauty. In addition, I added custom indoor blinds that drop down and close out the living room below for that added privacy.

The large sleeping room upstairs accommodated two queen size beds, two nightstands and shelving against one wall. The bedroom is quite large.

Past the bedrooms and down the hall is the bathroom and a ton of storage! There are three large mirrored closets in the outer area of the bathroom, one of which houses the washer and dryer. This outer area also has under cabinet lighting, over head vanity lights, a dimming switch... all of which add to the beauty. Click HERE for photos not shown.

Step through the door to the inner bathroom and you'll find the commode, tub/shower combo, and a wall of cabinets with drawers. Did I say tons of storage?

Two months ago I installed a brand new water heater!

Special features:
  • Undercover parking spot with power to plug in your car.
  • An additional storage closet on the main floor.
  • Only one adjoining neighbor...Nobody above, below, and only on one side of the unit. My unit is an inside corner and the hallway encloses two sides.
  • Quiet!
  • It took me 10 minutes in the winter to drive to the airport for work.
  • Walking distance to hiking trails, downtown, and the beach.
  • Gas, Garbage, parking lot snow removal are all included in the low dues.
  • 5 minute walk to restaurants, and lake hood.
Lake Hood

We just lowered the price and this is probably the best value in Anchorage. With rezoning, many units no longer qualify for FHA loans... mine does.

It's just time for me to move on. My unit is now listed for $129,900 and priced to sell.

I'm not just selling a property, I'm offering a great opportunity for an excellent investment. Anchorage is probably one of the few places in the United States that the properties values haven't tanked.

Memories of Good Times in the Crash Pad

With every pilot photo there is always a good story, and this is one of the best. I'm willing to tell this very detailed, and fun, story that lurks behind this photo to the person who can find me a buyer...
  • Why was the captain wearing the "do anything" robe?
  • What is a "do anything" robe?
  • Why four pilots?
  • Why was the pilot holding Santa smiling when an hour before he wanted to cry?
  • Where did we land nine hours after this photo was taken?
  • Most importantly... "WHO" was taking this picture?
Many memories of the journey.

Please... if you know anyone commuting to Anchorage, moving to Anchorage, or someone who might know someone in Anchorage... I would so much appreciate help in the sale of this wonderful gift.

Enjoy the Journey!

~ Karlene