100 Aviation Wishes: This is mine, now what is yours?

9:23 PM

By Dan Pimentel,
Airplanista Blog Editor

There is a joke in my household that goes something like this: Each time I fly with my wife, she sits in the right seat and mentally adds up the dollar amount of all the avionics, equipment and airplanes I "buy" as we complete the flight. "Man, if I only had a Garmin 480..." CA-CHING, another fifteen grand gets added to that mythical purchase order.

Yes, we aviators all have a mental list of the stuff we want to buy, places we want to go, and good deeds we want to complete in the name of helping push GA forward. I had never written down my list until this weekend, prompted by this "100 Life Goals" list I found on The Travelling Adventurer blog. It was written by a twenty-something named Elizabeth living near Orlando, Florida, and has a serious number of items already checked off...from the exhilarating " Visit Easter Island" to the mundane "Floss for 30 days straight."

But reading Elizabeth's list made me want to write my own "100 Life Goals" list, tilted of course in the direction of aviation. As it turns out, this exercise was ridiculously hard, even for a seasoned writer like me with a far-too-fertile mind.

So, take a journey now inside my head, to a land where everything seems possible, where all ideas - even the crazy ones - are attainable. These are presented not in any particular order...they were just written as they came oozing out of my brain while my fingers were attached to a keyboard.

And if you want to feel my pain as I agonized through thinking up the final 20 items, go ahead, write YOUR 100 Aviation Wishes list. Be honest, don’t just write "I want a...followed by every airplane you have ever seen at Oshkosh. Instead, be creative, give this some serious thought, and email your finished list of 100 items to me to post on this blog at a later date.


1. Earn a DC-3 type-rating
2. Fly into EAA Airventure Oshkosh in a business jet
3. Learn to fly helicopters
4. See the inside of Air Force One
5. Solo a biplane
6. Own an airplane with a turbine engine (see #11)
7. Land a bush plane in Alaska
8. Fly the Flightsafety 787 simulator
9. Spend a day as AOPA President Craig Fuller's shadow
10. Skydive...solo
11. Own a Pilatus PC-12
12. Visit Kitty Hawk and land at First Flight Airport
13. Earn a glider rating
14. Take a WWI aviator flying
15. Build a Lancair Evolution
16. See N1538C fly again
17. Fly business class or better in a Dreamliner
18. Earn a seaplane rating
19. Fly in a Terrafugia Transition
20. Be the lead photographer on an AOPA air-to-air photo shoot
21. Land anything on a Caribbean island
22. See my Welcome Sky Aviation Scholarship Program go national
23. Retire and publish Airplanista Magazine full-time
24. Be interviewed on national network television as an "aviation specialist"
25. See the percentage of female licensed pilots top 10 percent
26. Find a major donor to give $1 million to Lynda Meeks and Girls With Wings
27. Fly a Wright Flyer replica
28. Own a candy-apple red Rockwell OV-10 Bronco
29. Drop $100,000 on a full Garmin digital panel upgrade for my Cherokee 235
30. Walk aboard an airliner and see my granddaughter, Caitlin, as the Captain
31. Solo a Lockheed P-38 Lightning
32. Spend six months writing an aviation novel
33. Watch the sun go down on Bora Bora next to a seaplane
34. Buy a home at an airpark
35. Tour Italy's Tuscan countryside...by Stearman
36. Fly into the Monaco Grand Prix in a HondaJet
37. Ride jump seat in a 747-800i
38. Visit Oshkosh, Wisconsin every summer until I die
39. Fly to an Alaskan lodge by DeHavilland Beaver and catch a 40# halibut
40. Be the designated journalist on an around-the-world flight
41. Fly upside down with Chuck Aaron in the Red Bull BO-105 helicopter
42. Right rear seat in a Boeing F/A-18F Super Hornet that is landing on the USS Nimitz
46. Fly a Piper Cub J-3 around a grass field near Lock Haven, PA.
47. Visit the International Space Station
48. Learn to fly aerobatics from Mike Goulian
49. Fly Katy to Oshkosh and back
51. Learn to fly SpaceShipTwo
52. Rebuild a radial engine
53. Visit a wind tunnel and watch aerodynamic testing
54. Tour Scaled Composites and watch commercial spacecraft being built
55. Read every one of Ernest K. Gann's books about flying
56. Have lunch with Bob Hoover
57. Drive the Goodyear Blimp...into KOSH
58. Fly to lunch with former AOPA President Phil Boyer in his1941 Waco UPF-7
59. Go back in time and ride first-class on a Pan Am Clipper to Hawaii
60. Photograph anything while riding in the tail gunner's position in a modified B-25
61. Earn a type rating in a P-51 Mustang
62. Break the sound barrier in an airplane
63. Have a 747 split my hair while standing on Maho Beach in St. Maarten
64. Land at KFDK to start my first day on the job at AOPA Pilot Magazine
65. Have lunch with "Sully" Sullenberger
66. Attend the Reno Air Races
67. Fly in the Pemberton family's 1928 Boeing 40C
68. Conduct a photo shoot of a DC-3 using an 8 x 10 view camera
69. Land an Icon A5 on Lake Winnebago
70. Eat a "Drive-in Double" at Ardy & Ed's in Oshkosh every summer
71. Ride along with the Blue Angels
72. Find $10 million dollars to independently film "Three-Eight Charlie"
73. Spend a day discussing aeronautical engineering with Burt Rutan
74. Pick photographer Jim Keopnick's brain to learn how to shoot air-to-air
75. Fly a twin engine airplane on one engine just to see what it feels like
76. Film a documentary about "Global" Henry Biernacki, "the Jump Seat Explorer"
77. Have Chef Stuart Stein cater a gourmet hangar party for the #Avgeeks at Oshkosh
78. Fly in formation
79. Buy a rock star bus and tour the country towing a Kitfox to use at random airfields
80. Own a Breitling watch
81. Celebrate the 1,000,000th licensed private pilot
82. Invent the perfect unleaded fuel for an aging GA fleet
83. Work the Fisk arrival station to control VFR traffic into Oshkosh
84. See Cessna sell a four-seat turboprop for under $500,000
85. Build a flying Recreational Vehicle out of a Boeing CH-47 Chinook
86. See a bill pass in Washington that kills the user fees idea forever
87. Fly 1,000 Young Eagle flights
88. Fly into a Pancake Breakfast in all 50 states
89. See both my step-sons, Michael and Scott, earn their pilot's licenses
90. Spend a shift riding along with a Coast Guard rescue helicopter
91. Always get a new medical and continue living free of prescription meds
92. Retire and earn a degree from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University
93. Own any airplane that has winglets
94. Fund a collaborative website that becomes the home of the "Aviation Family"
95. Win the lottery and buy anything that is FIKI
96. Fly a remote-control airplane without fatally crashing it on the first flight
97. Be able to do UTC time conversions in my head
98. See Toyota build a general aviation airplane
99. Sell a feature to Flying Magazine
100. Make a Forum presentation at Airventure to a SRO crowd

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