This is Lady Taildragger pilot Sneha Harish’s love story.
Guess who was instrumental in bringing Mike and me together?! Ladies Love Taildraggers, of course!!
Simply put – If it weren’t for Judy’s LLT,Â I probably wouldn’t have met my gem of a husband! It all began in the year 2011. I was instructing on the Bush Baby Explorer (A taildragger!) in the “bush” by Kruger National Park, South Africa and loving it!
It was in November that year I received a job offer in Uganda – a job I had never applied for! The company wrote to me saying THEY HAD STUMBLED UPON MY PROFILE ON LADIES LOVE TAILDRAGGERS and would like for me to be part of their charter organisation flying tourists around Uganda. I was being hired to replace one of their charter pilots, Mike Epstein, that had just resigned and moved ahead in his career. The only thing I knew about Uganda back then was that its capital city was Kampala (It used to be on my school quiz team, specializing in “Capitals of Countries”). Regardless, it sounded like a dream job in a continent dubbed “Deep Dark Africa”. A month later, I packed everything I had and off I went into the land of the unknown – well, at least for me, it was!
Fast forward 3 months to March 2012. I happened to bump into Mike Epstein, the pilot whose position I had filled in the company. It was at a company dinner overlooking the lovely Lake Victoria. We were introduced to each other. It took him 6 months to convince me that we should be dating (I still tease him about how persistent he was!). A couple of months into the relationship, he tells me how he had seen pictures of mine shared on a social networking site from an Airshow on my Company’s 15 year anniversary earlier that year in February. And that he had taken a liking to my legsÂ Â and set up the whole meeting on that particular evening with help from mutual friends. So it wasn’t by chance, after all!Â
3 years later, Mike and I even had the wonderful opportunity to be colleagues at another company in Entebbe, Uganda and fly for Doctors Without Borders in The Democratic Republic of Congo! A gorgeous, lush green country with the warmest people, the most ferocious thunderstorms and some stunning landscape to fly in!!
Even the proposal happened up in the navy skies on the night of 8 March, 2016 in a B-777 (Not a taildragger but special nonetheless!Â ). I was on my way to Malawi for a new job and Mike accompanied me and surprised me with a ring! In April of 2017, after being with each other for four and a half years, we tied the knot in Cape Town, South Africa (Mike is South African) and later in November 2017, we had our Indian wedding in a town called Mussoorie in the lower Himalayas. I wanted a beach wedding and Mike wanted one in the mountains. Both of us were left feeling satiated indeed!
We now live in Hong Kong, blissfully married. Mike flies the Boeing-777 and some day when I grow up, I want to be like Mike! As a life partner, Mike’s immensely supportive of my ambitions. He’s very inspiring and I couldn’t have asked for anyone better to share life’s adventures with! I can’t thank Ladies Love Taildraggers enough – best matchmaker ever!!Â Here’s to Flying, Laughter & Happily Ever After!!Â