ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Through the lense of an airliner pilot; "The first commercial flight to Odessa"

Updated on September 30, 2013

During my life, I have had many idols from Martin Luther King to Steve Harris; from Eric Johnson to my father, they have never been scarce in numbers. However, I am taking this time to dedicate my paragraphs to the one person who changed my life greatly since the day I met him, Furkan.

“Furkan, one more thing, should I report anything after take-off?”

“Well, you better report airborne when passing 200ft above the ground!”

“Alright, thanks.”

“Okay Enver, do not forget to read back every single word given to you.”

“I'll bear that in mind, I will get it done!”

“Good luck!”

It is 22.45, at Ankara Esenboğa Airport. I am asked to take this bird to Odessa. Everything looks great, checklists have already been completed. The weather looks suitable for any visual take-off, at least for now. When I think about it, the weather it is not a big deal actually, it should not even be. I have been practicing my take-offs and landings in any kind of weather conditions since I have gotten accepted as a captain pilot to Sun Express Virtual Airlines.

Alright, time to check every single way points I have got on my route, fuel pressure for engines, V1 and Rotate speeds on EFIS screen...yes, it is done. Repeating the information given to me one last time: “this flight will last approximately 2 hours…keep runway heading after take-off and switch Esenboğa delivery on 122.10…reserve fuel will be reported after two hours and 10 minutes…”

Flying is a complicated job, or "hobby" can be a more appropriate word, maybe. It may sound confusing to you; well I must admit it is extremely confusing. Who knows, maybe that is the reason why my fingers have been shaking since I got in the cockpit, but I am sure this is not the fear, yes; simply I have got too much pressure on my shoulders. Getting back to the flight, this one has a special place because for the first time I will be flying to a former soviet airport -Odessa and of course, within an airspace full of pilots and air traffic controllers.

My watch indicators hit for 22.50PM this time, which is the time to leave gate 112. Taking the last opportunity to take a deep breath and here Odessa, I come.

“Cockpit the ground, we’re cleared for push back facing North.”

“Please set the parking brake sir, wish you a pleasant flight.”

“Thanks.”

It has been 2 minutes since the passenger doors were closed and finally our six month old B737 has officially left the gate we’ve been parked on for 2 hours. After the start up checklist has been completed, time to connect to Esenboğa ground to get taxi clearance. “Okay Enver; calm down. They are basically people just like you… You shouldn’t even worry” Okay, I am not scared. Not even. I shook my shoulders, taking a deep breath and pressing “communicate” button on the edge of my rudder and trying to give the look of a “self confident” man:

(Clearing my throat) “Esenboğa Ground, Sun Express 981 is ready to taxi.”

See Enver, you shouldn’t exaggerate, it wasn’t even difficult.

“Sun Express 981 Good night; you are cleared to taxi to runway zero-six right, via taxiway Alpha, Bravo and Yankee.

“Wilco; taxi to runway zero-six right, via Alpha, Bravo and Yankee.”

The rain is getting heavier, I could feel the punches of the rain dropping over the cockpit wildly. Okay, on the runway, setting flaps to five degrees, auto brakes on RTO position. Everything is in its right position; now the only thing to do is to wait for take-off clearance to take this bird up in the sky.

No response. Feeling the scary silence in the cockpit around me one more time. But suddenly, the heavy voice full of confidence comes from the other side:

“Sun Express 981, wind 340 degrees, 10 knots; you are cleared for take-off runway zero six right.”

“Cleared for take-off runway zero six right, Sun Express 981”

Alright, time to push the throttle lever and reach the dark wet sky above us. Pushing the throttles until their end doesn't make any change but in a few seconds my beautiful Boeing 737 begins to accelerate on the wet runway surface. Speed indicator looks happy to be reaching up to 50 knots shortly after the engines were forced to do so, there is no turning back. 80 Knots, I think of sleeping in peace instead. Fully-throttled engines don’t even hear what I am saying, speeding up to 165 Knots just like a man trying to cross his borders... Suddenly, the callous voice of auto pilot filling up the whole dark, scary, cold cockpit one more time, "ROTATE!" No, no wait! It shouldn’t be so simple; I don’t even know how to fly… “Gear up!”

It is over. The young Boeing 737 gently maintaining its initial altitude, 9000ft while I am busy watching the wet clouds go by...

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)