Around the World in 41, 833 Hours
Why did it take me so long to travel around the world? I could have made several trips to the Moon and back in that time. Sometimes I think I did!
Take for instance my many flights in that luscious 707 we named Silver Phyllis.
That was during the time I flew as Chief pilot and Manager of Aviation for Robert L. Vesco financial wizard and fugitive from the U.S. government. Those were cyclonic years which were well documented in my first book “The Flying Carpetbagger”. The experiences were mind shattering but the pay was good.
I’d like to go down on record here as affirming that I never was in awe of aviation. I never really looked upon the career I chose as glamorous or particularly exciting, (except when the iceberg almost nailed me or when I left a country in an array of bullets). Flying an aircraft was my job and I did it well. I was always aware of the risks involved and never took anything for granted.
During my flight training years I passed that attitude on to my many pilots. When I worked as an FAA inspector, the pilots I failed never realized that I saved their life and possibly that of their passengers.
Early in my life I proudly wore the uniform of a Navy Pilot. As I view from this distance of sixty plus years, I still feel a pucker as I brought the aircraft in to land on the Carrier USS Cabot.. I have been quoted as remarking that the foremost reason that you brought her down on the tiny spec in the vast ocean was the number of shark in view circling the ship.
I might have wound up with Flag Rank . However the Navy reduced my service time by three months thus I never reached my 20 years. So we parted company at 19 years and 9 months.
You can see that I was a “smart…” even then. I never, ever learned to take orders. Over the years I have mastered the art of giving orders. I have a history of three ex wives to testify to that. My recent and last wife simply smiles and mostly ignores my orders.
Next event in aviation I graduated to Corsairs, then helicopters and became a “Weekend Warrior” . You see the Navy needed me; they just couldn’t figure out where.
Captain A. L. “Ike” Eisenhauer