Why are there so few female pilots?

IMG_4767A good friend sent me the link to this blog posted by The Smithsonian.

I’ve long known that the percentage of female pilots who are major-league commercial airline pilots is microscopic. One-percent or even less, worldwide. Why? There is a lot of misinformation out there, as the blog says. I encounter girls and women who tell me they aren’t going to pursue or didn’t pursue a career flying planes because they they weren’t good in math. I don’t know why that myth persists. Math has little to do with flying. As long as you’ve got ten fingers, you’re good to go. :) If I had to sum up the skills required it’d be good spatial awareness in three dimensions, and a can-do kind of confidence that propelled you to pursue the dream of becoming a pilot in the first place. Not math.

Blog: http://www.airspacemag.com/daily-planet/why-are-there-so-few-female-pilots-180954115/?utm_source=airandspacenewsletter&no-ist

Secrets of the grapevines

Every year around this time we must prune the grapevines in our vineyard. This year it was so much easier than last year, our first winter living here. Before that who knows when anyone last trimmed the vines? The property had been neglected for a long time before we purchased it. This year it took about two weeks pruning on and off. But last year it took about 6 weeks! But the weather’s been glorious, sunny and mild, and it’s a beautiful chore when you can be out there in the sunshine listening to birdsong. Eventually we hope to make wine, but for the near future we just want to keep the vineyard alive until we can get irrigation to the vines.

As we were pruning back the dead canes and leaves we kept discovering these little nests, almost hummingbird size. I wonder to what kind of bird they belong. Finches, maybe? Any ideas?

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Some spectacular photos from 40,000 feet

I’m not exaggerating when I say that only about one in fifty flights over the remote Russian city of Petropavlovsk is cloud-free enough to afford me  a view of the ground. But on my latest flight to Seoul, it was so spectacularly clear that I was able to get some great photos of the volcanoes that tower over the city.

Here’s the approximate location of “UHPP,” the aviation identifier of the airport at Petro:

FullSizeRender Approaching the volcanoes:

FullSizeRender_3Check out the ice limning the INSIDE of cockpit window on the lower right side of the photo. That’s normal, from the extreme cold outside and the humidified air inside the B747-400 cockpit. It melts on the descent and makes “rain” inside, causing annoying dripping on us pilots:
FullSizeRender_2 Just amazing, this view! Wow.

FullSizeRender_1

Until next time, fly high! :)

A Dozen chances to WIN!

I was invited to place my historical time-travel book, Once A Pirate, in a fabulous collection featuring A Dozen Rakes, Renegades, and Rogues, oh my! So, to celebrate, I have a contest to share. Today and and every day for the next 12 days on my author Facebook page, there’ll will be an opportunity to win a free book of your choice and maybe even a Kindle Fire. Here’s all you need to do:

*** Romance, Rakes, Renegades & Rogues GIVEAWAY***
Enter here: http://tinyurl.com/RRR-Giveaway-Day-1

OPEN TO INTERNATIONAL ENTRIES

Here’s our first giveaway for Romance, Rakes, Renegades & Rogues GIVEAWAY. Enter each day for chances to win books by today’s featured author, Susan Grant. If you enter daily, you’ll have that many more chances in the final drawing to be the winner of a Kindle Fire HD6.

Enter here: http://tinyurl.com/RRR-Giveaway-Day-1
Join here for the event updates: https://www.facebook.com/events/1410045212621589/?source=1
(This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook)

IMG_4883RRR Day 1 Susan GrantOnce A Pirate

Breakfast, Shanghai style

On this last trip I flew with a pilot who ate nothing but American style food, like burgers and fries. When I’m overseas I LOVE eating whatever is local. Luckily (or unluckily, if I’m trying to keep weight off), I rarely meet a food item I don’t like–well, maybe not organ meats (yes, I’m talking to you, Taipei). For breakfast in Shanghai I had soup… Fresh noodles, assorted cooked veggies, ground spicy pork, tofu, flavored oils (sesame, chili), fried onion bits, with a delicious pork bone broth labeled over all. Spectacular! I’m going to try to duplicate this at home for dinner one night.shanghai breakfast

Fire and Ice in Kamchatka

Flying to Seoul the other day I passed over an the area on the Kamchatka Peninsula in Russia that has dozens of volcanos…29 of which are active! Talk about fire and ice. This photo was taken from 38,000 feet, nice to be able to do so as it’s so rarely clear enough to see the ground.

kamchatka