Tag Archives: microlight

cold tits and warm tits


Winter’s here!

Well, I say winter’s here but it’s been a balmy 9 degrees for the last few days. That is all set to change later in the week though when the wind from Siberia is set to swoosh its way down at a rapid rate of knots bringing its pal, snow with it.

That’ll turn a few warm tits into cold tits.

Rude?

I’m not being rude. Let me explain, dear reader.

Many years ago when Boofuls and I were trainee microlight pilots our instructor was the late, great Tony Wells, otherwise known as Uncle Dumper.

The name came about when Boofuls gained his pilot’s licence, I was still circuit bashing,  and we would want to go off flying together, which of course we couldn’t do in a microlight with a baby in tow so we’d say to Tony, “Can we dump her her on you for an hour?” Tony would always respond with mock anger. “Dump her on me? Oh yes, I’m just Uncle Dumper, me.”  The truth was that he adored Lashes and enjoyed being in her company. 

She spent so much time in his company as a small child that she developed his dry sense of humour. None of the other kids at nursery ever knew what she was on about. She still has that odd humour to this day. It’s Dumper’s legacy. Until she was about ten years old she thought he was really called Uncle Dumper because that’s what we all called him.

Anyway, I digress.

Uncle Dumper used to talk about the weather forecast in terms of cold tits and warm tits.

I always thought, being the man he was, that he was being sexist in order to annoy me. Something that he always found highly amusing. He always knew exactly how to push my buttons and I always reacted, never realising till it was too late that he was making fun of me. Dammit, Dumper, you did it again!

Well. Imagine my surprise this week when I discovered that it’s actually true!

Here is a quote from flightlogistics .com

The weather chart indication of a warm front is xxx generally remembered as ‘warm tits’ whilst the indication of a cold front is xxx generally remembered as ‘cold tits’. You may never look at a weather chart in the same way again! Occlusions termed as Warm or Cold, they have similar weather as warm or cold fronts but take less time to pass.”

Well, bugger me, he wasn’t making it up!

 

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Those magnificent men in their flying machines


You may or may not know this, but many years ago Boofuls and myself used to be microlight aircraft pilots.

For me it was a case of, ‘If you can’t beat ’em, join ’em,’ but I took to it like a duck to water and just like every other person who does it and likes it – I was hooked. Lashes was only a few months old at the time so I’d give her a quick breast feed and then leave her with Boofuls while I’d go off on my lesson with the late, great Tony Wells who came to be known as Uncle Dumper because Boofuls and me used to dump the kids with him while we went flying for an hour or so.

Eventually the time came for me to fly solo. My little plane was a solo striker like this one:

http://airbikeuk.com/about_us_2.html

Source: http://airbikeuk.com/about_us_2.html

 

This isn’t my plane, mine was prettier than this with a gorgeous rainbow coloured wing.

But, you know what? That’s worth a whole post to itself. I’ll save that one.

Every free weekend for about ten years saw us loading the car up with the kids, food and  warm clothes to go and spend all day at the airfield waiting for the wind to drop and make the weather flyable. As we waited we’d watch hardier souls than us fly in and out of the field,  pursing our lips and taking a sharp intake of breath as we watched and passed judgement on the standard of landings and take offs. It was easy to judge if it was a good landing or not. If you walked  away without either yourself or your aircraft being damaged it was a good landing.

There was of course the commentary that went with it: “Oh, there’s one coming in. Oh look at him he’s all over the place. OH!!! HE’S GONNA LOSE IT! OOF! He’s done it!. WELL DONE LAD!!”  It was usually a big hairy arsed bloke. We female microlighters were a bit thin on the ground. Where we used to fly there were only three females, which made us a bit of a novelty. We were collectively known as ‘fanny squadron’ in our highly politically incorrect club. Being heavily outnumbered by the blokes we had to put up with  much banter about us not knowing one end of a spark plug from another, fuel/oil ratios and our inability to single handedly lift a wing and  rig an aircraft, which,  most unlike me,  I had to take gracefully as I did once manage to put the wing on my plane backwards. Dammit. I got ribbed about that for years!

Eventually, the novelty of standing on a cold airfield all day waiting for maybe ten minutes of flying at the end of the day when the wind dropped sufficiently, wore off. I think it must be a woman thing, I just kept thinking of all the things I could be doing instead of just standing around all day. All the men were quite happy to stand around all day just enjoying the atmosphere and the camaraderie. As exhilarating and breathtakingly beautiful as it was  flying over Morecambe Bay for a few minutes just as the sun was starting to set, or circuit bashing on the beach on a clear day,  the pain  to pleasure ratio was all wrong.

Eventually I  decided to hang up my flying suit and go to university to get eddycated instead. If I had spare time I used it to study, flying …it flew out the window. And that, as they say, was te end of that.

This week on television was a programme about  the Round Britain Rally, a microlight race which, as the name implies, involves flying round the whole of Blighty in three days. It’s a rough, tough, gung-ho, Boy’s Own comic, gruelling endurance test of an event for those who fancy themselves as a bit of an Indiana Jones type.

 You can watch it here – but only for a couple of weeks, I think..  Boofuls took part in it once with Uncle Dumper and had to be unceremoniously rescued by me and Tony’s wife from a field in Tewkesbury after an engine failure brought  their adventure to an  ignominious and early end. The programme features some good friends of ours, a few acquaintances, a few people we don’t know and just a couple of people we wish we didn’t know but most importantly it gives a brilliant insight to the sport of microlighting.

There is some fantastic aerial photography and it truly captures the pioneering spirit of microlighting  –  and also some of the angst that the pilots go through but, hey! Don’t take my word for it – go and see for yourself!