Yesterday morning we headed off to Sacramento Executive Airport where James' plane is hangared for an adventure. James has been a private pilot for 11 years, but we haven't flown all that much with the kids. We decided to rectify that situation. James' plane is a Beechcraft Bonanza, which he co-owns with about a dozen other pilots. It can hit about 175 mph. Which makes it possible to travel to unexpected places just for lunch, which is just what we did. It was a perfect morning; no wind, sunny, no haze or fog. After checking the weather in all directions, we settled on a trip to Half Moon Bay, just south of San Francisco.
One thing I've always loved about flying in small aircraft is the amazing things you can see from 4000 feet that you can't see at any other time. When you're in a big jet, you're too far up to see so much of this detail: the texture of the fields as you fly over the valley, the variation in colors, Mt. Diablo in such sharp relief, the delta spreading out in all directions, the green, soft hills covered in yellow and orange wildflowers. We could see the Golden Gate bridge in the distance as we were approaching Fairfield. It was such a cool way the view the scenery, so familiar from the ground, very different from the air. The kids were fascinated as never before with the scenery as we flew down, enjoying Alcatraz, the Bay Bridge, all our usual stops, through a bird's-eye view. Just after clearing Sausalito we had to rapidly descend from 4500 ft. to 1500 to stay out of San Francisco Airports Class B airspace. Beats any roller coaster.
We flew south along the coastline, landed in Half Moon Bay, and walked to Barbara's Fish Trap for the freshest possible seafood lunch. This was a total departure from our usual lives, an escape from the ordinary in every way, peaceful and unhurried, no agenda to keep. Time to laugh, talk, enjoy the company of those I love most. I know this week would fly, so I'm very grateful that this trip was what it was. Exactly what the first day of spring break should be.