Saturday, June 20, 2015

A Vacation Day

June 20. Uh, this is what I did today. We are staying at Amanruya and it was too beautiful to leave!


Looking out toward the Aegean Sea

Our "cottage" had a private infinity edge pool


Summer is slow season at Amanruya




Another view of the patio and pool at our cottage

The structures are made from reclaimed building materials, echoing the way civilizations have re-used each other's leftovers for centuries


Sunset!


Flying from the Azores to Turkey (by Jack)

Saturday, June 20, we accomplished the longest single flight day of the trip...more than 3,000 statue miles (2,600 nautical miles) from the Azores to Turkey with a fuel stop in Spain. It was a long day (11 hours of flying), but beautiful weather and scenery the whole way. We easily deviated around a bit of convective activity (thunderstorms) over southern Italy and Greece in order to stay in clear skies and smooth air the whole trip. The plane performed flawlessly, almost as if "she" knew it was an important trip.

The trip took a little longer than expected (advanced planned for 10.2 hours versus the actual 11.1 hours) due to fairly strong headwinds for the first few hours of the trip from the Azores to the coast of Portugal. But, the RTW (round-the-world) crew of six took the long day in stride with positive attitudes and good spirits. We also spent about 25 minutes longer on the ground getting refueled in Girona, Spain than expected due to my failure to make advance arrangements for payment of the fuel.  Thus, we we expected to arrive in Bodrum, Turkey slightly before sunset and ended-up arriving shortly after sunset. The weather at Bodrum was perfect, so no worries on the approach and landing.

Some random photos related to the flying day (photo credits mainly to our traveling companions who are much more adept at photography)...

Arriving at the Ponta Delgada, Azores airport at about 05:30 local time, the flight crew gets ready to head to the plane for pre-flight...the cheesy pilot uniforms on two of the crew sometimes make relations with the local airport officials easier...


Just before sunrise (about 06:00 local time) our trust steed awaits departure with anticipation (yes, I engaged in a lot of anthropomorphism when it comes to this bit of aluminum)...


Six hours later (headwinds!), visual approach to Girona, Spain for a re-fueling stop...

Girona, Spain
Getting re-fueled in Girona (after some delay with paperwork)...


Two-thirds of the flight crew on break while re-fueling (actually, Josh worked hard in the re-fueling process, I was the only one goofing-off) ...


The last third of the flight crew in the cockpit working hard to negotiate an extension of our departure "slot" (approved departure time) with the Spanish air traffic controllers...


Departing Girona (video)...


Enroute at 28,000 feet over the Mediterranean the Captain is feeling fine...



Our proud Italian co-captain narrating an aerial tour of of his homeland as we fly over Italy..."on the left, you can now see Pompeii and Mount Vesuvius"...


The scene of the big blast itself (somewhat obscured by clouds)...

Pompeii and Mount Vesuvius
The route was basically this (although the Azores are a little off the left side of the map)...



Arriving in Turkey just after dark...

Night over Turkey
The Bodrum, Turkey airport is large and has lots general aviation (private) airplanes...most of them bigger than our bird!

Bodrum, Turkey airport
After a long day, the Chief Bottle Washer relaxes at the Bodrum hotel around 2300 local time (11p, UTC+3)...

Relaxing in Bodrum, Turkey hotel
Now three full days of R&R (rest and relaxation) in Bodrum before blasting-off for Muscat, Oman on Wednesday (June 24).