Two BIG STOPS i.e. in Minneapolis MI and in New Bedford MA

June 23, 2013

These two stops were very nice ones, not only because Sophie joined us in Minneapolis MI and because I met my flying pals in New Bedford MA, but also because we really had here not anything special to do such jobs as making an update of the Apex Honeywell system, as searching for a lost computer (Ulaanbaatar), as looking for food (Anadyr).

I want to mention once again that Kamchatka was very nice as well, but Olga gave us lots to do from minute one of our arrival until our departure. It’s a fact, no complaint Olga.

The contrast of having a free day in Minneapolis and one in New Bedford, with the other previous free days is, that we had at least some relaxing moments. The best score had Minneapolis.

The landing in Minneapolis on 19 June was a very unpleasant one, because the USA Customs resp. Border control Officers argued that we had broken the law by not calling them before we left Edmonton AB. In spite of the fact that we produced an official FAA Document which gave us the freedom to visit at least 50 USA Airports including KMSP [St Paul Minneapolis MI, in spite of all formalities and in spite of a Flightplan submitted by Andy, they requested us to pay the sum of $10.000, only.

I argued that we did arrive from a country not really agressive to USA i.e. Canada, but that did not matter. They knew other airports did do it differently, but it was time a lesson was learned.

My next question was if it would have made any difference if we would arrive from Canada or Afghanistan. Short answer NO.

So we followed them into their office.

Next question: who of you is going to pay the penalty and will be it by cheque or cash. Our somewhat longer answer was NO ONE.

Here I cut the story short. We could leave without having paid the penalty but … well then came a large number of rules we should follow next time.

Jim Hillegass, Veronique Wantz and Sophie picked us up from the airport and brought us to their magnificent house in Wayzata, just outside Minneapolis.

Dinner, good rest. The next day we spent visiting Veronique’s studio and Jim’s office.

In the afternoon we made a boat tour on one of lakes around their house (compare it to Loosdrecht if you wish) and we observed the start of a sailing race. At this point Hans Bok joined us. He happened to be exactly on that day for his work in the city. Was it just luck Hans or did you have a good nose for this opportunity.

Veronique had already a big problem with her back when we arrived, which must not have become less after we left. Poor her.

On Friday 21 June we left for New Bedford MA.

When we crossed Lake Michigan we learned that the Chicago airport was temporarily being closed for heavy thunderstorms. At least Lufthansa and a couple of other flights had to be diverted.

At New Bedford Urs made a pretty akward landing with probably 30 knots of wind gusts. It all went well and the passengers considered it a perfect landing in spite of the heavy wind gusts.

Rodney Tibbetts, who started to teach me flying IFR, then came last year to Amsterdam, was now waiting with a professional photographer to put together millions of bits of our arrival in KEWB. These photographs have not reached me yet so I hope they can be published in one of the next blogs.

That same evening we were invited by Knute and Jan Aarsheim. Peggy, Hans’ wife joined us. It became a particularly nice evening. It had two immediate results:
1. A flight with Pilatypus with Jan the next day
2. An offer for me, say demand, to stay with them when visiting USA next time. For the insiders “no cats”, just Max the friendly dog.

The next day Hans and Urs did some airwork in Hans’ Sukhoi. Inverse hammerheads, twisted screwdrivers and what have you. Both survived.


At the same time I made a very small solo flight in the Cessna 182T in preparation for the flight to follow with Sophie to Nantucket Island.

Then Urs made a demo flight with Jan and Hans in the vicinity of the New Bedford MA airport.


We all met again in Nantucket. A TFR [Temporary Flight Restriction] meant that at least a Vice President was visiting the Island as well on that day and as a result the Airport was packed with G4 G5 [Gulfstreams], Citations, Falcon 900, Global Express and (5) PC-12’s. Since KACK [the airport of Nantucket] was not on our list of eligible airports, Hans and Urs had to take Hans’ twin engine Commanche a/c.

It was a long day after all.

Harry and Sophie back from Nantucket

To finish this day we had a dinner with Henk in the airport restaurant. For me it was very nice to see him again, in good shape and spirits, Urs and Sophie had still to meet him.

dinner met Henk

Sunday 23 June departure for Montreal QU.

Post by Harry Heijst | June 23, 2013 |

1 Comment

  1. …………..I´ll say it. Same progress report as yeasterday……………?????
    All the same I wish you a spendid onward jounrey!!! Michiel

    by michiel irish' stephenson | 24 Jun 2013 | 16:01