"Flyinn isn't just a flying experience - it's a life experience"
This quote by a recent Flyinn guest has inspired my summary for the 18.19 Flyinn Season. (Thank you Chris).
This season we hosted 20 new couples, and welcomed back four returning couples. A lovely balance. Guests enjoyed exceptional flying through beautifully scenic mountains and landscapes, with full hosting for both pilots and non-pilots, and interesting destinations for all. Customised itineraries were provided for each returning couple.
All guests enjoyed their new Flyinn base in Wanaka, and this was especially pleasing to know from our return guests. Please read more about this in other recent stories.
Throughout each itinerary, we especially enjoy getting to know one another. Here are a few stories from this season.
Geordie Hill Station is the welcoming platform on day one, with warm scones, coffee and an introduction to the days ahead. During each itinerary, a return visit is planned to learn about the merino industry, help with shifting a flock of sheep, and generally join in with whatever is happening on the day before joining Matt and Jo for dinner. This can turn out to be more fun than was first planned as one group discovered. Their not-quite-fit-for-farming Lexus Landcruiser became firmly stuck in mud - and gumboot-clad farmer Matt walked off for help! Meanwhile guests in town shoes were left somewhat stranded, pondering their next move. Was this some reality TV stint? Would he return? Fortunately, the farm tractor was not too far away, and the wait in a sinking vehicle, in the middle of nowhere with fading daylight, wasn't too long. Geordie Hill drinks and dinner were a welcome and jovial affair that evening!
Despite best planning, one Flyinn aircraft had to stay in our engineer's hangar at the start of the Season. It was missing an seemingly un-procurable part. Matt scoured the internet for days and finally discovered the part - certified and ready to go - in the USA. But time was running out. New guests were about to leave the US, bound for New Zealand and their Flyinn vacation. Encouraged by connection through past guests - who'd become firm friends - we contacted our new guests who were more than happy to help. The even more fortunate part is that a career in the Airlines, and dealing with the intricacies of baggage handling, enabled our guest to keep our precious part with him, for fear it would get damaged in the hold. Thank you Matt and Kris!!
As I am sure you all know, earlier this year New Zealand sadly came under attack. One person caused our country to loose its innocence regarding such terrible acts. It is still in recovery mode. We came to learn of the wide-spread effects such an event has on many many people, as well as those directly involved. One guest who joined Flyinn shortly afterwards, was attending a conference in Christchurch at the time. He spoke of how another attendee had planned to be at one of the Mosques involved - and would have been, had the conference's program not run late. I learned of their group's support. It was a frightening time. During the immediate aftermath, we heard from many past guests - thank you so much. Some also asked how to send financial support for the victims' families. This reminded us of our wonderful Flyinn community. Thank you all for your love and support, it is really appreciated.
Some guests plan their Flyinn vacation to coincide with a special event - a birthday, an anniversary, or retirement. All of these are joyous occasions. This year was no exception. One unsuspecting guest had mentioned this holiday was for a significant birthday. His pilot's licence helped us know what day that was. So it was fun when the evening dinner at Geordie Hill was actually on his 60th Birthday. Dessert just had to be a deliciously decadent chocolate cake, complete with candles and a song!
Flyinn guests join our lives, as we join theirs.