It’s Later Than You Think!

I’m convinced someone is trying to tell me something! Within a few days, I received the identical “message”, one spoken and one sung, from two lady taildragger pilots. It started at Blakesburg, Iowa when Sharon Tinkler went on stage to accept the last of 3 awards she received that evening. The second “message” came from Gail Schipper a few days later in an email. Read on.

Bill Tinkler

Bill Tinkler

At Saturday night’s Blakesburg award’s ceremony, Sharon Tinkler quoted words her ill husband, Bill Tinkler, often said to her. She’d be at home doing the routine things people do and Bill, who could no longer fly, would say “Sharon, fly now, fly now, it’s later than you think.” It had an impact on me immediately and I’ve thought of it many times since then. I believe the comment hit home with me because I know how much both Sharon and Bill love flying. And certainly because it came from a lovely lady that lost her favorite man less than a year ago.

Bill made the pilgrimage with you once again.

Tucked in the pocket of Sharon & Bill’s Luscombe  is a photo of Bill.  He was there in spirit with her this year when she made the annual pilgrimage to Antique Airfield, tucked in the pocket right beside her.

  Life/Flying Balance

In a hangar at the airport, Where a brooding pilot blinks,
Deeply graven is the message — It is later than you think.
The clock of life is wound but once, And no man has the power
To tell just when the hands will stop, at late or early hour.
Now is the time you own; The past’s a golden link.
Go flying now, my brother (sister) — It’s later than you think.

Author unknown

And that heart-felt message was followed by one from Gail Schipper. Gail sent me this early video of herself flying “Primary” just a couple days later. In the video, Gail is flying her Bücker Jungmann accompanied by a special tune – the message is in the music!

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