Sort of like a road trip…

30 September, 2018            Sort of like a road trip

…except we flew

Tuesday my instructor Ernest and I flew to Tangier Island Airport (KTGI) because you can’t get there by car. You can take a boat to KTGI or you can fly but that’s it. Unless you’re a really awesome swimmer. We flew in our trusty 1997 Cessna 172R, N9754F. Here she is Tuesday afternoon at 1:51 PM as I was walking out to do her preflight inspection. Both her wings and tail are tied down; this is how we leave the planes after we land:

N9754F before takeoff Tuesday: 

In August of 2014, my friend Pat’s son Daniel flew the three of us to Tangier. We flew in a Cessna 172 that time as well; you can see it if you look at my old blog post. You can also see pictures I took that time; I was flying as a passenger so I got to take more in-flight pictures, including our flight out to and landing at KTGI: I went flying yesterday!

I took a lot of pictures on the island that day as well.

Tuesday I used my phone to take a lot of pictures on the island too. When we were leaving, I took off but Ernest flew circles so we could gain altitude over the island and I took a few images. Last time (according to my blog post) I took 120 pictures during the trip. Here is a selection from this trip. My favorite is the one at the top of this post, a panorama of the airport. Our plane is in the center. I took that picture at 6:01 PM, just a few minutes before we took off.

If you go to Tangier, you see cats. They’re everywhere. There were none around the runway, fortunately. I’m sure many were shy, but not all. This one walked right up and introduced itself:

First time we’d ever met. The cat just walked up and said hello. In its cat manner: 

Look at this sky. Notice the cat at the top of the ramp:

Feast your eyes on that sky and those tombstones and masts and the cat in the center of the image: 

We had lunch at the Fisherman’s Corner Restaurant, about ten minutes walk from where we tied up the plane. I don’t recall what Ernest had, except he shared some crab dip with  me that was out of this world. I got a steamed shrimp appetizer and a soft shelled crab sandwich; it was a treasure. I still have a hard time wrapping my head around leaving my house after lunch, flying to these “far away places” and getting home in time for dinner. We’d had a longer flight planned (to the south) but the weather wasn’t good down there so we diverted to Tangier. Great diversion!

Here are a couple of pictures I took while Ernest was circling the plane and gaining altitude before we flew back to Hanover:

About 1,500′ over the island. See the runway down there? 

3 minutes later – and 1,500 feet higher: 

Anyway, I can’t resist (of course) a couple of hawks. As I was walking out the door of my morning job Monday, a Red-shouldered hawk flew directly toward me, swooped up and landed on the entranceway peak just above my head. I turned around and took this picture:

Hawks ignore us (I’m moderately certain) but this one swooped directly toward me Monday morning and landed directly above my head. Posed while I took this picture: 

Two days later there was a Red-tailed hawk, in much better light, a stone’s throw (literally) from my house. I had to walk to take this but it’s real close:

See what a difference nice light makes? Plus, compare breast colors between these two. That’s how you tell a Red-shoulder (top picture) from a Red-tail (this picture) 

I took all three dogs to the river this morning but it was nearly fourteen feet deep and most of the trails were underwater. We walked for half an hour or so but we headed back before I took a picture of all three together. But Yuki was my copilot on the drive home, and he doesn’t look too unhappy about leaving early. I took this picture just as we started back:

Spend more time with dogs. You’ll get happier right away. Check out this handsome, happy boy: 

Evelyn and I had late lunch/early dinner at our favorite restaurant Fresca on Addison yesterday. In nice weather we walk from there to Bev’s Ice Cream in Carytown for dessert and yesterday was spectacular. As you walk west late in the day the sun shines brightly on those south facing walls (on your right) and the plants love the sun. There were gardenias – incredibly – plus these passion flowers. Take a look at the bee on here:

Bee on a passion flower

One more picture (at least). I was hiking with my buddy Kendall at Deep Run Friday and we saw this highway safety orange fungus growing alongside the path:

Dad loved to say “there’s a fungus among us.” Mom and I loved to eat mushrooms but Dad always called them “toadstools.” He wouldn’t have been able to resist commenting on this orange beauty: 

More next week! I hope! Have an excellent week,


About Jay McLaughlin

I am a rehabilitation counselor. I have many friends with autism and traumatic brain injuries. They help me learn new things constantly. I hike with dogs at the James River in Richmond - a lot. I've completed an Iron distance triathlon a year for 11 years. My most recent was in Wilmington, NC in November, 2013. I currently compete in mid-distance triathlons. And work and hike and take pictures and write and eat.
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2 Responses to Sort of like a road trip…

  1. Peter Meiller says:

    nice post, Jay

    • Thank you Peter! It’s been a fun week! We’ll have to get together with the dogs at Pony Pasture one of these days. October is some of the best weather. Take it easy,


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