My digital world of aviation

As most of us are trapped at home due to the COVID-19 pandemic these days, I ended up having a little bit more time to spend on activities that were waiting on my to-do list for a while. One of them was to start my own blog about my lifelong interest in aviation and here I am... my first post.
Delta Air Lines jets parked in Victorville, CA on March 28th, 2020

Photo AirTeamImages
Why aviation

When I was very young, we used to live very close to the Los Angeles International Airport. My parents tell me stories about how I would always cry if my mother did not take the route that passed by the airport every time we left the house. Watching airplanes land was apparently my favorite thing to do even then.
Ever since I was a toddler, I was captivated by the big metal birds flying on the horizon, transporting people around the world.
When we moved to Washington DC, my passion and curiosity for aviation only grew, thanks to my frequent visits to both the National Air and Space Museum in DC and the Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Virginia. I remember my awe with all the aircraft every time I entered the museums. I think the SR-71 Blackbird sitting at the entrance of the Udvar-Hazy Center and the Concorde on display at the aviation hangar are truly majestic. I also remember spending hours at the 'How Things Fly' section of the Museum which really struck me as a five-year-old.

Planes were the only toys that I would play with. Everybody knew that, and they would only bring me small airplane models as a gift. Over time, I have accumulated a sizable airplane collection. My mom and I used to look up actual airport maps at Google Earth and replicate true-to-scale versions of them using felt, glitter glue, and tape. We would then pretend to land the airplanes with instructions from the control tower; it was one of my most favorite activities.

I can't simply count the number of hours I, as a small kid, spent on the website browsing through aircraft images and watching a DVD that my father found for me on eBay including hours-long footage of commercial airplanes landing and taking-off at different airports around the world (that was before-YouTube).

I also spent many hours in the observation tower in the Udvar-Hazy Center waiting for my grandparents to land and I will never forget my special visit to watch the inaugural Air France Airbus 380 land at the Dulles International Airport.

Another fun activity for me was to go to the Gravelly Point Park by the Potomac River with my father and watch the airplanes close-up, approaching and landing at the Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport.
Over the years, my love for aeronautics and space kept growing.
As I grew up, we centered many family trips around my passion for aerospace, including the Hayden Planetarium in New York City, the Kennedy Space Center in Florida, and a guided tour to the Boeing factory in Everett, WA. Watching how they were putting the airplanes together at Boeing was an amazing experience for me.

Last summer, I purposefully asked my parents if we could fly back from Turkey on August 8th, just to be on the inaugural flight for the new Boeing 787-9 (Dreamliner) for Turkish Airlines and experience the water salute at the Dulles International Airport firsthand, inside the plane.

What's next

Now that I started, I intend to post regularly. I read, watch, and learn so much about aviation and space all the time; I should not have any supply constraints with respect to content :)

Topics will most likely center around my key interest areas including aircraft and airport design considerations, use of technology to improve efficiencies in routine operations, drones, urban air mobility, and space travel to name a few.

Blog posts may also include additional personal items such as trip reports, my observations about the airlines, airports, and current news, developments, and research.

Looking forward to it!
APRIL 11, 2020
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