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August 19, 1998

We really do have good intentions about leaving early in the mornings. But sometimes it doesn't work out. What is this deal about being close to the ocean and getting fog in the morning? We are supposed to be in Arlington, Washington by 8AM, but I think we'll be late. At Arlington, they have a Russian PO-2. The aircraft is the one that the Russian Night Witches flew in WWII. We were to fly in it with the owner Jeff Thomas but because of the delay, he had to work. Bummer !!! Arlington has some interesting planes there. They have a museum that they are developing. There is a German plane that is very interesting to me. After a great reception, we headed on to Vancouver, Washington (Pearson Field), where our man Doug Dawson was waiting for us along with the Chkalov Committee. They are the committee for the 1937 Russia to America Transpolar Flight Monument. We met them at the Pearson Air Museum. Great museum and very warm reception. We hated to leave, but really, we shouldn't worry, because we didn't leave. As we were loading up, someone noticed a hole in the top of the right wing. Looked like a bullet hole exit. I took the inspection plate off the bottom and could see the problem. Quick phone call to David Wright from the Maule Factory and we had our problem analyzed and the cure. On the ramp in Anchorage, (during the night), we had some hellacious (BAD) winds come up. They forced the flaps down past the normal range and the actuator lock mechanism slipped out of its slot and bend 90 degrees up. Eventually with use, it wore its way through the top of the wing. With the help of Tom Clark at the Air Museum, we were able to get our problem fixed. We spent the night and got some good rest...

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