Ah yes, monday. The perfect day to start with a few completely new runs in the sim, along with the announcement that “we’re doing holdings today”. Great – besides being a good way to delay airplanes if necessary (pretty much letting them fly in circles), holdings are also something we only did once about four months ago, and never since.
For some reason, it still works (somewhat) well, and once we get that done, the feeder/pick-up (with me as pick-up) run actually turns out quite well.
After that, it’s a two hour run on area control again, with me as planner (i.e. the guy who coordinates with other air traffic control units how they send us their planes and how we send them ours). As with the first run, the teamwork is quite good. I still create some unnecessary work for my radar controller though when I accept an airplane that needs to climb below another one that needs to descend. Not exactly “wrong”, but “not nice”. I decide to use the “Monday excuse” here. :)
A short break later, it’s again feeder/pick-up, this time with me as feeder.
The result manages to put a big smile on my face (on Monday!) and is more fun than someone should be allowed to have when he’s actually getting paid for it. The whole run goes extremely smooth, the sequence works, the “extra-bits” fit in perfectly (visual approach, “maintain own separation”), the pilots play along well (“we have the traffic in sight”) – all with enough traffic to not get bored, perfectly hand-fed to me by the pick-up controller.
i.e., an unusually perfect end for a monday. But of course, it’s not all good – we still have that exam on wednesday, so back to learning. :)