Thursday, June 27, 2013

A great day ends. A day of God's good grace. Early this morning I flew up to an airport near Lake Waullenpaupack in the Poconos, a 90-minute flight up and the same amount back. I flew up with a friend for breakfast. Yesterday I called the restaurant on the field to see if they'd be open today. "Come on up, honey," the owner said, "We'll be waiting for you." We got there to find lots of small planes parked by the restaurant, and a line of pilots waiting to get into a closed restaurant. Rumor had it that the cook wasn't feeling well and didn't show up, so they closed for the day. The local pilots were running a shuttle to a diner about 4 miles away, but we decided to fly home without our $100 pancakes (lots more with the cost of aviation gas these days!).

There were lots of planes out today. The chatter on the radios was non-stop: apparently I was not the only private pilot with the idea to enjoy the beautiful flying weather. The air traffic controllers at Harrisburg's approach and departure control center were busier than I've ever heard them. with a mix of commercial and private aircraft. Harrisburg's TRACON (Terminal Radar Approach Control center) has responsibility for air traffic control over a rather large chunk of the sky in south central Pennsylvania and they sure were busy today.

At 5500 feet altitude the views were beautiful: high enough to see far yet close enough to the ground to enjoy the mountains and lakes. A safe landing (even if I did flare high... again) and then a few appointments with God's people in the afternoon at the parish, and after Mass I cooked dinner for 6 other priests and seminarians at the rectory tonight. Now here's the surest sign of God's graces: it seems I did not poison any of them with my chicken saltimbocca! Let's see if they survive the night.

June 15,2013
Msgr. William J. King

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