My two boys gave me a voucher for a flight simulator experience for my birthday. I had to ring up for a booking date and time. So here I was in the centre, greeted at the door and brought into a room upstairs to get briefed about the aircraft they use for the simulation. A Boeing 737-800NG. I was shown a large sheet on a wall showing me the controls and dashboard and overhead elec. panels of the 737. Very important as I am now going to go into the aircraft downstairs. My first tutor accompanies me and I'm introduced to my flight instructor for my time in the Boeing.
This simulator is a cut down 737 as far as the front galley area with a large screen in front of the nose. It is exactly what a 737NG should be in the cockpit area.
I was given further info about the instruments and what the flight was going to be that day. My time in the Sim was to be 1 hour so a quick learning curve. I did a take off from Shannon runway 24, climbed and then we did go arounds and several landings with different parameters ending in a very low cloud landing with decisions to land based on what I could see of the runway, made by me with sweaty palms. I found the whole experience fascinating and pretty exact from what I know about flying. This simulator is as near to an airline one as you can get but it cant compare to a multimillion dollar/euro professional one so you cant get the full professional feel with correct noise, movement and landing jolting etc. For the cost of my day in it, thanks to my boys, I thought it was well worth it, if only for the entertainment value and the education given to me which was invaluable. My instructor was brilliant.
After I finished my wife and I went for a walk around the center as there were loads of exhibits like engines and aircraft. We stayed around enjoying the whole centre in the company of a guy called Sean who was fascinating to listen to as he had been working in aviation in Shannon. He was very educational and entertaining and we learned a lot about aircraft and airports. Time went on and we ended up being there for nearly 3 hours just looking around and talking and hanging out with the staff. They're are all good fun and in the end my wife and I had a great time in Atlantic Airventure. We had now to return home to Dublin but I had memories of that special day, for me and also my wife in Shannon Town near EINN.
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