#232 Mo’s training field Maricopa AZ

Dec. 30th 2008

It was a two hour drive to Maricopa where Mo Sheldon lives. I arrived at 11:30 and waited at the storage units until 12:30 when I gave him a call. He apologized and said that he was in the middle of something at that it would be about 20 minutes. It was after 2:00 when he finally arrived. My mistake was not calling as soon as I got into town he probably wouldn’t have started whatever the project on his laptop that delayed him. Anyway two hours were lost and instead of doing a rebuild we safety checked the motor and did a hang test. The buggy is fine… it hung straight and about the only thing we found that needed attention was a loose exhaust mount at the midpoint. The reason the motor was hard to start turned out to be the end of the plug was loose. I didn’t know that the tip threaded into the body of the plug. That little bit of information was worth the price of admission.

I did load up the little tool bag with some more weight and remounted it behind the reserve. The buggy was probably was riding high on the right because the wing was off to the side but the torque of the motor was also probably a factor. Later when we went for a flight I was pleased to notice that the risers were close to the same height so it must have helped.

We discussed the possibility of going to Mo Town but the time was getting tight and opted for the training field.
At 4:30 Mo and I drove out to the field which is about 5 miles east of his shop. It’s near a small regional airpark and about as flat and smooth as you could ask for. He took the buggy up and declared it a good machine after a quick lap around the field. Then we rigged his dog into his trike and the three of us went for a nice little flight. There was a small hill rising 200 feet from the desert floor a couple of miles away…just another bump in the desert…that I flew to and explored a bit. After landing Mo and I chatted while we put our gear away. I’m going to send him my schedule and with a little luck I’ll be able to hook up with him and go to Mo Town on the way out to NAMM. He is still bugged by Martins death but recognizes that it was nothing that he contributed to. His theory is that Martin had “Get There-itus and ignored the conditions to “get there and be photographed” buy his family. I doubt that I’ll be seeing Mo at the next Gathering but glad that he isn’t carrying around a bunch of guilt over Martin.
The drive back to Tucson went better than expected and fortunately the Hacienda Del Sol is on the near side of town so I was able to meet Paula and the others in time for dinner. The Hacienda has been developed since I was their horse wrangler but the food is just as gourmet as when Otto was cooking for me 32 years ago!

Author: JoeO

Powered Paraglider pilot since 2005

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