Gone Fishing – 2 Decades Ago I Took a Little Fishing Trip…

July/August/September 1997 (no, that’s not a typo)

Now for something completely different. A look into past Marshall’s life. Something totally unrelated to what I am currently doing, or who I currently am.

I’ve done several things in my life for employment. I wasn’t always a carefree (ha!) nomad. (Though I was at heart.) This is the story of something that I experienced during my first ‘career’ as an aircraft mechanic.

Little known fact about me – I got my private pilot license when I was a senior in high school. I had (misguided) aspirations of becoming a commercial pilot. It would be the culmination of my lifelong love of aviation.

I quickly decided that the commercial pilot route wasn’t going to work out for me, which left me at a loss of what to do. I distinctly remember (which most likely means it didn’t happen this way) my dad coming home one day and suggesting I go to aircraft mechanic school.

I thought this was an interesting idea. I also found it quite amusing since, during high school, I worked for the local flight school where I helped out the mechanics. I swore I’d never become an aircraft mechanic. But I did.

Fast forward a few years. I went to a two year technical school and got my Airframe and Power Plant licenses (from the Federal Aviation Administration, or FAA), which meant that I was legally allowed to work on anything that flew.

I soon got a job working for a major helicopter manufacturer as a quality assurance inspector. This was after working on their helicopters in a flight school environment, both while I was going to school and just afterwards.

One thing led to another and I got the opportunity to take a leave of absence from the helicopter factory and head to the South Pacific. Here I spent 2 months (49 days of which were at sea) working as the mechanic for the tuna spotting helicopter on a StarKist tuna boat.

I kept a handwritten diary of my experience during this trip. I knew that one day I’d have a platform to share this story. Not sure I realized it would take me 20 years to do so, but here we are.

If you are at all interested in reading my little fishing tale that took place 20 years ago this year, you can read my Gone Fishing story. This is also accessible via the “Gone Fishing” link in the navigation menu.

5 thoughts on “Gone Fishing – 2 Decades Ago I Took a Little Fishing Trip…

  1. Your aviation experience is similar to mine. Except that I was already out of school and working when I thought, “Hey, how can I blow a bunch of money? I know, I’ll learn to fly!” 25 years and 3 airplanes later (two of which I built, have the repairman cert for both) I am now dangling under a powered parachute and trying to figure how how to tell wife that we’re going to buy the Lance toy hauler rather than the 1985. Heh, we’ll see how that goes.

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    • You’ve kept at it for 25 years, unlike me. After I stopped working at the helicopter factory in 2001, I didn’t really do anything in aviation. Other than fly RC airplanes. My mistake was taking something I love and making a career out of it. Surefire way to make one not like it so much. 😬

      Yeah, you need the Lance toy hauler! I mean, just makes sense to me. 😜

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      • Yep didn’t want s career in aviation any more than I wanted to be a gynecologist. Why ruin something you really love?

        You’ve been in your Lance for a few years now, how is it holding up? You still happy with it?

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      • Ha! Point taken!

        Coming up on 4 years in the Lance. I’ve spent some time recently going through other rigs that were on the short list of possible replacements for my 1995. Didn’t find anything that makes me want to get a new rig, so I’m sticking with what I have.

        I’ve FINALLY decided to make the Lance my home. Personalize it. Recently (as in, still in the process) I’ve been redoing large portions of the interior. When I finally get done (won’t be for a couple of months since I’ve put this on hold until I can consult with my interior decorator) I’ll do a blog post showing everything I’ve done. Much nicer rig now, IMHO!

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