Taxiing to the CDF but waiting our turn.
On days like this...I don't envy these guy's at all.
The Vestergaard Elephant Beta aiming to attack.
What a day. (Note: airplanes do not have "brake lights" on their tails so one must be
veeeerrrrry careful. )
I don't know if it was me spilling some coffee on my pant leg while trying to open my "Timmies" coffee lid driving in a snowstorm or the 20 to 25 pilots/flight attendants lined up in the American Customs that foreshadowed a "bad hair" day.
We pushed back only about 8 minutes late with nearly a full load. But a flight deck door fault prompted us calling maintenance to find a remedy. Done.
Of course, I had to make an announcement telling passengers destined for cruise ships out of Miami we will be needing a spray at the "world's largest deice center."
Taxing was in near white out conditions especially when the guy ahead poured the coals to the engines. We crawled to the deice facility in 45 minutes.
I decided to woo my passengers with facts and trivia about deicing. (I said good bye to everyone in Florida and not one mentioned my "above and beyond" P.A.) I won't do that again especially after I told them I wrote the "aviation" page and enRoute is always looking for questions. Tough crowd. :)
The deice supervisor noticed we had snow in the #2 engine (first officer's side) intake and asked whether we wanted to shut down #2 to spray the intake. We did. It was the first for me. In fact, the checklists didn't handle it well either.
But it caused a power bump knocking the entertainment system off line. Another announcement by Captain Doug explaining what happened. Losing one's entertainment system is close to declaring a "mayday" nowadays. Passengers expect it and it better work!
Because the snow was deemed heavy in the weather report the holdover deice charts did not apply. It required a PCI (Post Contamination Inspection) meaning the F/O had to go back in the cabin and take a look at the wings.
I make yet another announcement explaining what F/O "John" would be doing.
Visibility got down to 1/8 mile in heavy snow so Captain Doug had to do the take off however the RVRs (Runway Visual Range) improved allowing my F/O to continue with the leg. Conditions had us sit on the runway and spool up the engines to 70% N1 for thirty seconds to rid of any ice in the intakes.
We launch 90 minutes late and the rest of the day was playing catch up.
Dumbo the Elephant
Captain Doug had a perfect attendance in 2010 and received a letter the year before that and the year before that for next to perfect attendance.
Well, I was planned to fly tomorrow but an ear infection is clipping my wings for the day. My right ear is not looking like the other so in best interest not to scare my F/O and passengers Captain Doug is staying home. My wife said I looked like "Dumbo the Elephant." She's called me lots of things over the years so I knew to take her seriously when she called me that. :)