our dogher’s dollar ride

She still owes us a dollar. In fact, she’s never given us a thing for all that we’ve done for her!

It was colorful for a Carolina sunset, with the orange glow fading slowly as we flew. It had been a while since we’d taken our little plane aloft. A thin yellow dusting of pollen coated it. We hoped in vain that 130mph air would sweep the pollen away. Instead, we’re still allergic to our aluminum bird.

Our passenger, a virgin to the air, made no comment on the yellow dust. She just looked out the windows, first on my side then on Sandi’s. She moved around, shifting the little plane with her weight. Sandi taxied. I kept an eye on her, reporting on each unexpected bump, “that was her”. Sandi ran the engine up for take-off. Our passenger put her feet firmly on the floor and stared at them, trying to figure out why the floor vibrated. She was wonderfully cute in her ungainly ear protectors and uncertain movements.

Once airborne, she looked out the window at the trees shrinking below us. She seemed entirely content, despite the fact that we had told her nothing about what to expect on her first flight. Her greatest complaint seemed to be sitting too low to see very much out the windows. That, and the discomfort of being lifted in and out of our tiny cockpit. Nevertheless, she was a great sport even if she didn’t know the Air Force tradition of giving a dollar to the instructor who takes you airborne the first time. That’s okay, our precious Chili gives us more than enough love and laughs to make up for anything she might owe us as her parents. I suppose it’s the same with all children, eh? We have a wonderful “dogher”!


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