This is it. I don’t want to wait any more. This is the year I learn to fly.

I guess I’ve done some forms of flying before. I was a student of flying trapeze for eight years, so I was actually called a “flyer”. This kind of flying has all the things one would want associated with that verb: thrills, excitement, moments of weightlessness, and a manageable sense of danger.

The other kind flying I’ve had is in lucid dreams, which I’ve written about here on The Nerge. Those experiences have run the gamut from mundane to breathtaking. Even in the mundane scenarios, it’ll quite amazing to be weightless and moving through space without any danger.

The flying I’m talking about here is flying an airplane. I’ve been wanting to taking flying lessons for about 15 years. The cost and the lack of time have been obstacles, either or both, at any given moment. I’ve decided that I’m just going to have to make time and find the money to do it. I imagine if I take just one lesson a month I can squeeze it in. That may mean it takes me ten years to get my license, but what do I care? In the meantime I’ll be flying a plane once a month, which is infinitely more than now when I fly a plane 0% of the time.

K’s grandmother flew her own plane for many years. She was a ballet instructor and would fly to remote places in the South to give lessons. She talked about it with me and how much she loved flying. She is certainly an inspiration for me.

In preparation for this, I have joined AOPA (Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association), who sends me newsletters full of jargon I can barely comprehend. Being a nerd, this excites me quite a bit. Flying is fucking complicated, it’s going to be mentally challenging — bring it on!

I heard about AOPA through a cousin of mine whom I spoke to at the family event I just posted about. He flew to the wedding in his own plane, accompanied by his wife, sister, and brother-in-law. He and his sister learned to fly when they were young, but apparently only he has kept up with it. I remember as a teenager hearing that they had their own planes. How glamorous that seemed! Of course, they were much wealthier than us so they could have these things. In my young mind, I pictured airplanes parked in their driveway like cars.

I have barely ever spoken to this cousin, but I approached him and told him that I was interested in becoming a pilot. He handed me his phone and told me to type in my email address and that he’d send me information. He gave me a few tips right there, and I thought, well this is fine but I don’t think he’ll actually remember to email me.

He emailed me the next day with the names of potential instructors, airfields, and organizations I should look into. Then he emailed me again with more information. My opinion of this cousin went WAY up. People who keep their word count a lot in my world.

So, once my schedule isn’t so full of work, I’m going to follow up on this information and get going on lessons. In the meantime, I’ll read my newsletters about virga and crosswinds and dream of being in the cockpit.