happy 20th anniversary boeing 777

B-HNL-JER

Happy 20th anniversary to our “Honolulu Baby” B-HNL formerly known as WA001.  I am proud to say I was probably among the first Cathay pilot’s to ever lay hands on this aircraft. The Backstory: In 1994 when I was a struggling regional airline pilot in the U.S., I was fortunate to be invited by some of my Boeing Co. friends to the rollout ceremony of WA001, the very first Boeing 777 ever produced at the Renton, Washington plant north of Seattle. It was a spectacular laser-show gala produced by Dick Clark Productions and when the curtain was lifted and the 777 revealed, I had no idea I was witnessing the beginning of a new era in aviation. I was able to place my thumb print on the belly of WA001 along with hundreds of other Boeing family and friends. I still have my original obligatory Boeing 777 polo shirt (which amazingly still fits after 20 years!) and all who were in attendance also received a special “777 lunch bag” commemorating the occasion full of food and goodies celebrating Boeing’s new ground-breaking management-style labeled “Working Together.” I still keep it as a remembrance.  As awe inspired as I was, little did I realize or even dream that exactly 10 years later I would climb into WA001, now B-HNL at Cathay Pacific, and pass my “QL” line check in that very aircraft.  The only Boeing 777 to ever fly with two engine-types (when I first saw her she sported brand new Pratt & Whitney 4090 turbofans) and completely rebuilt for Cathay – if you are lucky to fly B-HNL she is as sporty and lively as ever and after 20 young years will not disappoint. Aloha baby!

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Fun with Fisheye

FISHEYE1 image Got my hands on Canon’s 8-15mm f/4 L fisheye lens and this was my first shot outside my window on a spectacularly clear Hong Kong afternoon. Pardon the reflection from my rooms’ mirrored windows. Another shot from my office over the North Pole. – Looking forward to taking this lens underwater on my next dives. Click the image for full resolution file. Canon 5D Mark III.

captain aloha

a bit of shameless self promotion – on monday, september 24, 2012, i was awarded my 4-bars which signifies the rank of Captain, the highest flight officer position available at my company, Cathay Pacific Airways. our director of flight operations, Captain Richard Hall, presented the 4-bars to me in Cathay City (pictured above) and i must say it’s a great relief to finally have finished my “Command Course” on the Boeing 777.  a true ‘rite of passage’ at my company, the Cathay Pacific Command Course is one of the most intense and comprehensive command training programs in the airline industry.  after several months of nonstop training, it is truly a relief to have it all relegated to history.  thanks to all my friends and family members who supported me throughout this monumental point in my career. a salute to my trainers who also guided me through the ropes and made several training flights with me to get me polished and up to the level required of Boeing 777 commander.

i hope to fly all of you someday aboard a Cathay Pacific flight – and to my colleagues who are currently undergoing their command courses, and to those who are about to start – i wish you all the best. blue skies always and aloha! – jeremy

milan…meraviglioso!

on 28 march 2010 cathay pacific opens up a brand new destination in europe – the fashion capital of the world, milan, italy! i was selected as one of the 4 pilots who will fly the first trip into milan nonstop from hong kong in one of our brand new boeing 777-300ER aircraft. it should prove to be a fun and challenging flight – especially on the return sector where we will be the only twin-engined aircraft ever to legally fly over the high terrain around mt. everest and the himalayas. but enough of that technical stuff! all of the passengers and crew i’m sure will just be worried about one (or two) things – what good food and wine to eat and where do we find all the great shopping! prada anybody? i’ll try to snap some good photos from this trip so stay tuned for my next entry from italy. ciao!

777 belly of the beast

you’ve all seen those square aluminum containers – with a corner chopped off – at airports where they put your checked luggage in and wheel them around on those small carts never to be seen again until you arrive at your destination…if you’re lucky! have you ever wondered where they go in the airplane and what it looks like in the baggage hold of one of these big jets? before every flight, we (pilots) must do an exterior pre-flight inspection of the airplane. i fly the mighty boeing 777 and on my “walkaround” i had a bit of extra time so i climbed into the belly of the beast and snapped some photos for you. nothing glamorous but this aft cargo hold is just one of three huge cargo sections on the 777. believe it or not, baggage handlers have fallen asleep in here and have been accidentally locked in – free trip woo hoo! it’s pressurized so most survive – but we only keep the temperature at around 7-15 degrees C average…warmer if we put animals down here. so next time you fly Economy Class, be thankful you’re not stuck down here – imagine if airlines start filling this section up with people! it’s large enough to have a party, just bring your own sleeping bag. things that make you go hmm…

the other photos are just a couple of other 777’s that passed by as i was doing my inspection. a brand new 777-300ER by Eva Airways heads back to its home base in Taipei, Taiwan and one of our own 777-300ER’s prepares for a long nonstop flight to New York. the 777-300ER is distinguished from other aircraft by its distinct “raked” wingtip which improves aerodynamic efficiency in flight. magic! but it looks neat too. now you know!

boeing 777-300ER delivery flight

on january 17, 2009, i was selected, along with 3 other pilots at my company, to fly to my hometown of seattle, washington in the u.s.a. to take delivery of cathay pacific’s newest addition to its boeing 777-300ER fleet, aircraft registration B-KPJ. it was a momentous event – boeing rolled out the red carpet for us, treated us to tours around seattle, free dinners, including an exclusive at the museum of flight where they closed the entire museum in the evening to our group, a VIP factory tour and much more. overall, they treated us to a great customer experience. i guess you would expect that with a $276 million USD aircraft purchase! we were handed ‘the keys’ on 17 january and flew nonstop back to hong kong from boeing’s delivery center in paine field, everett, washington…where i first learned how to fly! what a fantastic, nostalgic occasion, a great company, and a beautiful machine. welcome B-KPJ, our newest boeing 777-300ER! (click the small thumbnail pics below to view the larger size).