Linda Salamone's Blog

Thursday, April 19, 2007

Quest Day 4 - second task
Wednesday, that is....
I got a B-day card from my daughter this morning at the pilot's meeting. She's a week late but at least ONE KID remembered my birthday. We get cards of encouragement from my teammate Raean and her husband Fred- at comps and even throughout the year- and after Tuesday's lackluster performance, there was another card from them at the clubhouse. It's hard to feel alone when when people leave comments and send cards! Sometimes it seems like I am writing into an abyss but that all changes.
Anyhow, yesterday, Campbell thought we'd never get a task off. It was dark and nasty and even rained a little on us in the staging line. I need to stay away from the naysayers because the wind goes out of my sails so to speak, and I forget how much is possible until after the first 20 people make it to goal. So I got into line a little early, pilots behind me getting pissed that the weak-link-breakers got back in front of us, and Russell Brown took me to a small group of turning pilots and pointed (duh!). When I got off I found decent lift and climbed to around 5K with a growing group. I let it drift me out of the park and in the right direction- mostly. There was the lead gaggle ahead and I kept an eye on them while I figured out the lift. My start clock never went off so I didnt have a clear direction (had to follow the 'shaded' arrow) and I was worried about tagging the first waypoint. I caught up with a glider that was turning way down low when my climb petered out, and I had about 2K on the guy, but when I tried to get in over him- there was NOTHING. I had few options close enough by and he was climbing a little, then I recognized the glider. I called to Mark and asked him where he was and after I lost around 900' looking for his crappy lift, he matched my distance except for altitude. So the two of us are all alone, in a bad climb and for a while we tried to make it into something. Now down to 2.5 K we leave and look around. I got something decent enough and continued on, keeping an eye on him. He just looked LOW. I caught up with other gliders and even had another good climb, but ran out of luck before the lake and didn't dare try to squeak out a climb over it. I had a great landing just behind another pilot named Jim (with a beautiful glider- purple) and Paris joined soon after. The landowner was a bit pissed off, and drove over his field to tell us so. His concern was that our retrieve drivers would drive onto his field ( we were right next to the road) and three other trucks that were with him drove over the field to intimidate as well. Whatever. So this reconfirms my belief that Florida landowners are weirdly protective and offensive and we should all just fly in Texas.....
So I didn't get the first TP but there were a few people who made goal. That just blows my mind. I mean, at the outset, it seemed possible. But the day was just a crappy flying day- probably a day when we would all go do something else- and like 11 guys made goal. Just makes you see what is possible. As long as you are still in the air, anything is possible as far as reaching goal. I am in good spirits despite being close to the bottom of the stack. I think the pressure from last year has taught me to never let it get to me that much..... Plus, Mark and I are having a great time and great food (Carrabbas last night!) and my dog is very happy. I am starting to miss my kids however, so it's a good thing this is coming to an end. Today looks BIG, even epic, and we are due....


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