That’s the spirit!!!!

Alphen aan den Rijn   Sunday March 20 2011

 picture by Kai Monkkonen

Got the next message from Japan from one of my friends   and though it is tough there, still with the nuclear threat, maybe cholera or typhus dooming up, the snow and icy conditions for the homeless, the vegetables and water around Fukushima,   “poisoned by radiation “,…the  Japanese spirit is not lost. And what about the 2 doggies after the earth quake ??! Unbelievable. In the middle of the rubble and devastation , nobody to be seen only one dog who  stayed with his injured friend.But….both dogs found a home and are safe now . And…the lady from 80 and the boy from 16 , found this morning after 9 days, weak but alive!!!!
Here is  the message I received;

—Please come to Japan after one and two year.
Our country  will certainly reconstruct.—

 On the OLC you surely noticed  a fantastic run up and down over the mountains  from Jim Payne starting at Rosamund Skypark; 1.765 km and a nice speed of  156.6 km/h. Must have been great fun in the ASH 25.This is his second long flight. On March 6 he flew 1.176 km with a speed of  165 km. /h also in the ASH 25.
I found on internet , that this park originally is already from 1947.It is privately owned and run by residents and located in Southern California’s Antelope Valley. When you want to know more about it you can go to ;

This weekend  we have great spring- weather here. Sunny, 2/8 of cumulus clouds yesterday and I even felt thermal activity. And when I looked on Sunday morning to see if it was good enough for soaring, I saw that 16pilots  found their flight interesting enough to put it on line. Clear visibility, great beginning of the season, a big difference in height en route, were some of the comments. In any case for all of them it was very morish.
And…249 flights in total, it says the season has started.
A lot of German pilots are getting in the right soaring-spirit at camps or private holidays, in Saint Auban, Puimoisson, Gap Tallard, Vinon and Serres La Baties. As you know I like to follow the junior pilots and follow a bit where they go and fly. One of them is Alexander Spaeth who flies at Puimoisson at the moment. I noticed that German super TC Uli Gmelin is using the beginning of the season for a few nice flights by himself. Over the season he accompanies most teams as their full time TC.
Now he flies the ARCUS T, the new super twinseater.
Here some pictures from the ETA another super glider; start,soaring,landing with Giorgio Ballarati. Pictures by Kai Monkkonen.


A busy weekwith guests from Australia , Holland and New Zealand. But GREAT fun!!!! Only the weather was a bit off on Friday , the day I showed my friends Tony and Emily from NZ around in Amsterdam. It was grey and it rained and they only had ONE day !!! No nice terrasses, but still good beer!!!!Inside!!! They will be back soon, they promised.

Very nasty to see a burning  fighter crash  close to Benghazi. It remains sad to see. The pilot died. Unfortunately there is at the moment a lot to worry about in our world! Certainly in Libya, were the VN resolution choose to interfere to  stop Kadafi from killing his own people. Wished the Colonel would have stopped this all himself.

After his visit to New Zealand   Prince William visited the Cairns area where disaster struck with the cyclone and the flooding. He specially wanted to visit the Royal  Flying Doctors Service at Cairns arriving there in a  Black Hawk helicopter. He visits both NZ and Australia after both parts of the world were hit by nature- forces.The spirit of many was lifted not only by the prince but also by the great weather with 32 dgr.. Good on him.

Sad news from the Berlin Zoo   yesterday , Knut, the lovely ice bear ,died age 4 . He stole the hearts of millions in the world when his mother decided to leave him on its own and was brought up by people in the Zoo and now millions are sad he suddenly passed away. There is some critic on the whole history of this kute little one , as well!!!

A very interesting phenomena yesterday  evening around 7. We had a SUPERMOON. It was full moon but as the moon was at the closest spot to the earth since 18 years , we had a huge moon. It looked about 14% bigger then a normal full moon.And…it was clear , cold, but you could look at it inside. The sunset was pretty good as well. I can only share the sunset as the super moon did not look SUPER with my camera.Sorry!


That’s it for now. CU next Wednesday, another busy week ahead.Cheers Ritz

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