Saturday, May 8, 2010

Fit to fly for another year

May 5 marked 4 years since I took my first flight lesson at ATP. May is also my month to get my FAA medical.

My first medical was a nightmare. I simply went to the closest Aviation Medical Examiner to my house. He doesn't regularly give FAA physicals. He was very slow and had me stressed in the first 10 minutes. Very pushy. At the time I lived a very unhealthy lifestyle. Little sleep, lots of caffeine, fatty foods and the occasional cigarette. My blood pressure was high...140/92 high. Before long he was shaving my chest for an EKG!! When  I left (after paying $190!!!) he said I might not even get a medical as my blood pressure was so high. I went home depressed....thinking I would never be a pilot. I got my first class medical without an issue and never went back to his office.

Since then I eat much healthier, exercise, limit caffeine (just coffee in the morning...rarely drink soft drinks) and no longer smoke. My blood pressure now is a much healthier 123/72. No drugs...just living healthy.

Each year since I have gone to the same AME. It's an AME that most pilots in my domicile use. He does FAA medicals all day everyday in addition to being a family doctor. He charges a flat fee (under $40!) and is easy in and easy out.

I stopped in last Thursday. When I walked in I saw a Captain I fly with every now and then along with two other First Officers I know. It was like a crew room.

First up was peripheral vision test, color blind test, distance vision test along with height and weight. After that there were the normal questions concerning my health, blood pressure, hernia test and urine test. That was it...I think. I was in and out in under 15 minutes. Nice.

Not much else is going on. My mother in law is in town for a WHOLE week. My wife and mother in law have been getting stuff ready for our baby due in August. She leaves on Tuesday or Wednesday. She flew here using airline miles but will be flying back with one of my buddy passes. I sure hope flights are open. ;-)

Sitting airport reserve tonight. I have a 3 day trip tomorrow. Beats both sitting at home with my mother in law and airport standby. The only bad thing is the first overnight is 8 1/2 hours.....crazy short!

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