(Editor's Note on the photos: When I was a kid my mom would take pictures on our first day of school. It was always by the bus and really embarrassing. Let's just say, that's probably about how Dusty felt posing for these pictures after the flight.)
Emily: "So Dusty, what did you think about receiving this as a Christmas gift this past year?"
Dusty: (insert smug chuckle here) That's a little bit of a selfish question isn't it? No, I mean, I was really excited... I had suspicions that that's what I would be getting this year but that didn't diminish my anticipation and my uh... thrill.
Emily: "Harrumph! Anyway, tell me a little bit about your relationship with airplanes and flying in the past?"
Dusty: Well really back when I was a kid and even through most of high school I wanted to be a pilot. One of the things that diminished that desire in me may have been when I discovered I couldn't be an air force pilot because of my poor vision. I know as a kid the thought of flying was always something that excited me. I used to study different kinds of planes and learned how to make all kinds of paper airplanes...
Emily: "So you were a nerd?"
Dusty: Hush! Anyways, I guess you could say that finally getting to fly an airplane was part of fulfilling a childhood dream of mine.
Emily: "What were you thoughts leading up to your flight experience?"
Dusty: I was looking forward to it. I was definitely keeping close tabs on the weather; just trying to prepare myself mentally to enjoy the experience.
Emily: "Did you have any reservations about taking to the skies?"
Dusty: Not for safety or anything like that... I felt like it would be a good experience. The only reservations I had was knowing I couldn't afford to continue taking lessons.
Emily: "Tell me about the flight experience. What was your favorite part?"
Dusty: It wasn't as stressful as I thought it might be. It was actually quite simple, of course I wasn't learning anything intricate at all, mostly just basic turns and keeping the plane straight and level. My favorite aspect of it was getting to fly over the Ohio River and seeing all the landscape from that perspective.
(Sorry for the exposure in this shot. As you can tell by his face, he was growing increasingly annoyed/embarrassed and I got flustered. Rookie mistake.)
Emily: "Speaking of the Ohio River, what was your flight route?"
Dusty: Well we took off from Bowman Field, and by we I mean the instructor pilot took off from Bowman Field; we flew in the direction of Churchill Downs past the Louisville International Airport. Once we got past the air traffic there he let me take over. We headed North towards the river and once we got to the river he let me turn in and follow the it up about thirty minutes. Then we did a u-turn and headed back to Bowman Field where he took over and landed.
Emily: "What kind of plane did you fly in?"
Dusty: I think it was a Cessna.
Emily: "Was it awkward flying with the flight instructor?"
Dusty: Yeah I feel like the flight instructor was about the same age as me. And that might have been a little bit awkward. We got to talking while we were up there and I learned a little bit about him and he told me his ultimate goal was to be a missionary pilot, so it was cool to be able to share that experience with someone I knew was another believer.
Emily: "Would you do this again? Do you desire to continue pursuit someday of a pilot's license?"
Dusty: Umm... yeah I would definitely love to be able to get my pilot's license some day so that option is definitely still on the table.
Emily: "Any final thoughts or words?"
Dusty: Thanks to my beautiful wife for the experience!
Emily: "Awww thanks honey, way to suck up."