(Originally posted 12/07/13)
Prologue - Recap
Begin: Paris Le Bourget (LFPB)
End: Gibraltar (LXGB)
Distance Traveled: 1122+ nm
Although this introductory chapter to The Big Tour is, in the grand scheme of things, quite short, I feel as if I have already made significant progress. I'm choosing to think--optimistically--of the Prologue as a kind of initial hurdle. By completing these ten flights, I've shown to myself that I'm more than capable of flying in some less than ideal conditions and navigating unfamiliar terrain completely without the aid of GPS systems. The rest of this grand journey, then, will be a matter of fortitude and incremental steps.
It is fitting that the Prologue should take us from Paris, the starting point of L'Oiseau du France, the 1930s inspiration for the present Tour (see the introduction for more on this), to Gibraltar, a historically significant crossroads and boundary point. I am particularly entertained by the Prologue's conclusion in Gibraltar: the Rock and the adjacent North African coast were in antiquity known as the Pillars of Herakles and traditionally demarcated the limits of the known world. It is beyond these Pillars that Odysseus wandered for ten years, encountering all manner of monsters and strange lands. When I pass through the Straight of Gibraltar on my way to Tangier, I too will be entering the unknown: I've never flown in Africa, Asia, Oceania, or South America and It won't be until I return to North America that I begin to enter familiar territory again. Quite the odyssey indeed!
Below I've included some selected screenshots that represent a kind of visual summary of the trip thus far. I'll try to do this at the end of each chapter so that those who don't have the time to read through everything can still get the gist of what's happened.
Thanks for joining me on the journey thus far! Onward and upward!