When I was young, I was laughed at, teased at, look down upon for things that didn't matter. Things like, using my brother's uniforms (I reused them since they have already graduated), being bullied because of that became part of my primary school life, and i can still remember, Joel, Kelvin, Aaron and Minhazul. So much so that my friends back then, were girls. probably why i clique well with them since.
After the incident two days ago, I realized my short temper is not because I am short tempered, but rather, I did not like the feeling of being laughed at. Something that haunts me since primary school. The stage fright I get whenever I speak publicly, was not because I am having butterflies in my stomach. But it was being afraid that I will be laughed at.
Well, my flatmate locked me in my toilet the other day, by putting my shelf right outside the door, it was funny at first, but when i heard them laughing about it, I could not contain my anger, I pushed the shelf off with one hand from the small gap I had, and jumped over into the kitchen and rugby tackled him, it did not just end there as I grabbed his arm and swung him onto the floor. That was then when I came to my senses that he was only 18 and he is just having some fun with the house. That was when I realized, that deep down, I hated being laughed at. Something I feared ever since my primary school days. It linked up well from all the other incidents that I got mad about in my entire life too. That blurry vision, the rage, the anger.
I remembered fighting with my bullies when i was 12, when puberty kicked in and i was the tallest in the class and they continued their daily routine of calling me names and pissing about with my uniform, my brother's uniform . I remembered punching Jason and punching Saravanan for laughing at me. I felt happy, I felt justice was served. I did not feel bad at all even when i was brought into the principal's office, or even when my favorite teacher talked to me about violence. I liked it. It gave me power, it gave me a way out.
As time passed, I used violence to solve everything, it was the easiest way to win an argument, and you could see fear in others. Something i felt glad about, I learned muay thai, wushu, kickboxing just to be strong and prepared. My brothers at home bullied me constantly too. I just wanted to be prepared. I wanted revenge, I wanted the enjoyment to beat them down. I did not want anyone to know the weak side of me. Never show your weakness. It will only be used against you.
But as I grew older, things started to change, violence only meant you were uneducated. It only meant you lost the battle.
I took a Crew Management Course recently to build a better cohesion in the flight deck. To be able to speak up when needed and to work on how you could do it without belittling the captain. IE, working on your EQ.
I honestly thought it would be a 3 day 9 to 5 bullshit of a groundwork. but I was wrong as i picked up on certain aspects in which i handled things wrongly.
I learnt that being straight forward can be a plus sometimes, but it can also bring u down to a pile of shit. IE losing your friends/making situations awkward/making the other party awkward/anger and the list goes on and on. I realized there are countless of times I did the wrong reaction to certain things. Things that I try to justify, things that went terribly wrong. But I guess I can learn from all these. But somehow when it happens, it happens and I sat there, regretting my actions and blame myself on how I could have done things better.
As the lesson progresses, I too realized how I was herded to a certain direction based on the choice of words used by the instructor. Same goes to Monopoly with the brits as they selectively used their words well to buy you over to their deal. Same goes to life, as people tend to talk to you in a certain way to get to their agenda, some good, others bad. I was shocked as this revelation hit me on certain people whom herded me a few times, or who are currently doing so to others. That, was scary.
I need to learn to control my temper, my straight forwardness and my ways of speech. I need to understand that I am now hanging out with non-singaporeans, where certain words I use may be normal with the sg peeps, but it may not be with the british. In short, I need to grow up . I am 25 this year, and as I look back on the past, my past. I saw and reflect on things I should have handled better, issues where I could have reacted in a completely different matter and the outcome would be drastically different. I lost a few friends, a few good friends that somehow I wish I could have set things straight. It is never too late to learn from mistakes, is it?
Does knowing all this make you a better person? no. there is a difference between knowing something, and applying it to your daily life/routine. Same goes to learning a sport, You can read as much about it, learning all the technicality and rules, but when it is time to execute it, you may fall short and not know why. It is so much easier looking at things from a 3rd person view, judging, criticizing, laughing, but when it is you on the hot sit, things just do not go the way you expect it. Same goes to daily life, everyone hates to be judged on rumours/1st impressions. But little do you know that you judge others based on that too, you cant do anything about it too. It just happens unless you are able to take a step back, put yourself into their shoes and feel. It is so hard to take that time to think and analyse that everyone takes the easiest way out. Judge. Assume. damage will be done.
Sunday, October 19, 2014
well..there is always a first to everything. but today it isnt a good incident.
i planned a route that was pretty tough, even instructors said it would be hard to do so, especially when it will be my first time. i managed to fly everything well (with some helping hand of the garmin of cause!) and i made it back to hamilton from Auckland
awesome picture with the sky tower right next to me. didnt bust any heights or control airspaces if you are asking.
but what happened badly was on my return to hamilton. traffic was packed. with ATRs rolling.. i had many non standards calls.
fault 1. i saw the ATRs rolling for runway 36. when ATIS called clearance for 18.i simply assumed i was going to land on the same runway. never was i that wrong
fault 2. when the wrong runway is selected, naturally.. left and right bases would be wrong too.
fault 3.. new clearances i have yet to hear. something new, cross the tower. i honestly did not know what to do with that.
so in conclusion. yes. i had to file an incident report. the first in my batch. something i feel ashamed of. time to learn..
1) ATRs always get 36 clearances regardless in hamilton
2) make sure you get the right runway before doing anything
3) drown myself with beer now.
but all in all..
WORTH IT. for such a scenic flight around the North.
Thursday, October 16, 2014
night flying.. something that is 10 times cooler. accompanied with the scary factor that if the engine fails. you can only pray that the black spot u are landing on is not a river but a nice flat grass paddock. i came in for my flight at 6pm. didnt expect myself to be so unprepared. contrary to Hamish's brief about night flying. Kuni was a much more thorough instructor.. with workaheets to complete. and a proper flight plan to Ardmore in case of an emergency. he gave me the look of disappointment when i have not done any of those stated above. such is life.. 30mins of frantic planning and looking up information before i begin starting the plane. 20mins late from my actual offblocks time.
we tracked to Te Awamutu-Cambridge-Huntly and back to Hamilton. everything looks so much nearer as compared to daytime navigation. and the lights are stunningly beautiful from the cockpit. Kuni kept repeating his jokes about scary and lonely. i dont doubt the 1st part. but the lonely side was kinda funny. keeping my nerves in check.
i didnt think i would mistake house lights to stars.. it looks pretty hard to be as dumb to think. those ground lights are stars isnt it? but when Kuni told me to close my eyes and put my head down, while he upset the aircraft. from a unusually high pitch up of the plane which would further lead into a stall, "now open your eyes and look" well. there you go. i was disorientated.i couldnt make out which were stars or houses. but in that split second. i had to look into my instruments and recover. we did two upset recoveries.. a spiral dive for the 2nd one. which wad pretty cool to see the plane being thrown about. wonder how Phoebe felt at the back with all the Gs and unusual manoeuvres. hah.
we did 4 touch and goes. it felt weird at first. when all u can do is trust those PAPI lights to know if you are on profile to land. not to mention the runway was pitch black. thus, losing your orientation of where the land is. all u can trust. is those edge lights that will soon pass your peripherals on the sides of your face as you focus on your landing.
great experience to the night section of the training!
Wednesday, October 15, 2014
i used to think Navigation was tough. even in Singapore during SYFC.. even though i didnt do any navigation, the reality that i couldn't identify any features in my homeland to pinpoint where i am scares me. When i was studying in Liverpool, my fears got worse as we had substandard teachings and ground theory from a typical flying school that wants to earn as much cash off you as possible while youre there. so yes, i couldnt identify anything during my navigation stages there too.. leading me to have a constant fear of what i am going to do when i hit this phase.
well, CTC did a good job in drilling into us some procedures and checks that made me more confident in flying to even places i haven been before.. prehat, post hat, gross error, cruise check, and also with the way we planned each leg.. i took 3.5hrs doing up everything the first time i did my nav planning.. subsequently the time reduced amd now it only takes 2hrs or lesser..depending on how tough that trip is.. can u imagine the relieve i feel when my old fears turned into confidence that i even travel to places ive never been to on my navigation solos.. nothing happened... just as yet. *fingers crossed*
another 30 more flights before i am done with my NZ phase of training.. something that is bitter and sweet.. im finally heading home! but that means the training on a real aircraft is about to end abruptly and the start of simulators is nearby.. which feels somewhat upsetting to know the next time u get to fly , would be another year.. but at least it will be on an A320.
Friday, September 19, 2014
The feeling you get, the ecstatic feel when the plane lifts off the ground. the clouds, the sun abeam your horizon. the buildings, becoming all so small, and the cars become tiny ants, moving around what looks like an organized track around a piece of land. and when you are approaching to land, that nostalgic sense of satisfaction. of putting the aircraft on the centreline of the runway, the steady approach. the confidence to tell yourself it is safe to land. the flare, the constant adjustment to keep your plane straight and smooth. and when the wheels land. softly, that's a perfect day.
ever since I started flying, each flight is something I looked forward to, being prepared, reading up notes and studying some theories about aerodynamics. this feels nothing less to awesome. even now, I have been reading the A320 flight manual, just to get prepared for the next stage of Sims training during the UK phase.
Well, I did my first solo two weeks ago, felt a great sense of achievement when I managed to land it smoothly and dead on centre. probably an experience I will never forget. especially Mr Thomas Bartells, the B cat who made my life hell during the solo check, which I felt was a good wakeup call that I am never good enough, that I must work harder to correct my flaws. don't be complacent, be firm, be confident. but never complacent into thinking you are good enough. I am glad he had a go at me for all the flaws I had, something which Hamish would not do, probably because he is too nice of an instructor, or maybe it is because the Airforce mentality of instructors being mean and nasty is still in me. But that should be the case, isn't it? pilots should be able to handle stress and to learn from mistakes, not "it is ok, don't worry. " I would rather have an instructor pinpointing all my flaws and have a go at me, that makes me want to strive harder, and be a better pilot.
for now, I just hope, my medical renewal, which is in the end of the year, will go smoothly. I haven't been sleeping well ever since that day when the doctor told me I failed. Let alone this medical needs to be done every year for renewal. I guess, I will not have a peaceful rest until I get my first renewal and see what I am up against. But before worrying about things I cant control. I am doing all I can to get things I can control all in the right order.
Monday, July 07, 2014
Well, I guess when u are abroad, u began to miss things. Late night supper, the ease of travelling, the people around you and of course, your family. Being in New Zealand is different from the times I had in Liverpool, At least there are some Singaporeans in Liverpool whom you can relate to, but sadly, over here, in the land of cows. I cant seem to find someone who I can talk freely.
Ground school is over, 2 more days before my final exams, and times are tough, you don't really know what you don't know, and you don't know if you are ready. passing grade is 75%, and subjects like Performance of Aeroplanes have 34 questions, which means each question wrong has a high weightage. and 7 papers, spread out in 3 days. hopefully everything goes well.
I spent over 3000NZdollars on travelling the next 2 weeks of breaks I have after ground phase. sadly, the land of cows is pretty expenseive to travel, esp when everything here requires a car and activities are at a price where you probably have to burn your pockets to afford them. have u ever seen a fat man eat rice with light sauce for 3 months? you will soon, beginning of August.
Well, the past few weeks I have been alil moody, Isabel and Marcus got together, and being the tight trio we used to be, I have already expected that, despite the fact that I helped Marcus with her, and also that I did not make any move whilst in Liverpool showed how much I did treasure this friendship. Bros over Hoes they say. but I was disappointed, not because they did not tell me about their relationship, but because they kept questioning who told me and how I found out. aren't we the tight 3 that stick together in tough times in Liverpool? During the AGM this year for Singsoc, I was disappointed that they didn't invite me to attend, even through Skype, or even write a piece of farewell, or help with the handover details of sponsors. the only person that asked, was Jhawn, who dropped our friendship months ago, I guess he knew how Marcus was like. I felt glad he did, and I managed to attend the meeting for 30mins, at 3am in the morning in NZ. I guess, distance changes people, and we have to accept the fact that, friends drift apart, and people change. like me, I changed quite a fair bit in my times in NZ. every step is a learning journey to me. and I honestly hope. this risk on being a pilot is worth it.
Tuesday, May 13, 2014
We began learning General Navigation this week, and what we learned amazed me. about the shape of the earth, the way we navigate with different charts and different diagrams, how the chart is made etc. sometimes I wonder how would a Man make this sorts of chart, or rather, invent these works of art. for accuracy and navigation purposes.
I realised I, as someone who wanted to be a pilot for this long, do not know much about the world map. ask me about types and where oceans are, what and where some countries are, I do not know. sometimes, I feel ashamed for not knowing these general knowledge. I blame myself for not taking my education seriously when I was younger, ahh. those youthful days, being carefree, constantly standing outside classrooms, being sent to the discipline mistress. who would have thought I would end up here, studying the hardest I can, working the best I could to succeed in my dream job? Never once have I put in this much effort to any work in my entire life. haha. funny how life works.
I wonder, what would happened if I had stayed in Singapore for my education? or even, stayed in Liverpool till my degree is over? would I be different? judging from the many things I have learnt thus far, I hope I can be a better Man, and by that, it means letting go of things that are weighing you down, and things that are not meant to be.