For those of you who know me, the following news won’t come as too much of a surprise. For the rest of you reading this, it just might. There is no easy way to say this so I’ll just cut to the chase:
September 2016 will be my last month flying in Indonesia.
I’ll just let that sink in for a moment.
After nearly seven years out in Indonesia I have achieved far more than I ever intended to. I came out here with the intention of staying for a couple of years to build up some hours before heading back home to Europe to go and fly for one of the airlines. However something happened when I got to Indonesia; I fell in love. I fell in love with the people, the flying, the Pilatus Porter, Papua and the madness of living in one of the world’s last frontiers. It has been an absolute blast but if I’m honest I have been yearning for a bit of normality and, more importantly, a new challenge for a while now.
But don’t worry, I have not gone off to an airline but something much more interesting and in keeping with my flying experience. I did flirt with the idea but I have lost count now of the number of seasoned airline folk I have met who have all tried to put me off the idea for one reason or another! The main thing for me however is I will be able to come back home to the UK now. This will allow me to establish that more normal life I have been yearning for whilst still doing some interesting and challenging flying. I will also be able to get back into the UK GA scene and of course do more warbird flying with the Catalina. And as an added bonus, it will be nice to have passengers who wear a few more items of clothing!
I will be combining this blog with my personal website http://mattdearden.co.uk to continue to keep a diary of my adventures so don’t worry, I’m not going to abandon it. I’ll also continue to write my column for Flyer Magazine for the foreseeable future and I might even get roped into giving a seminar or two on my adventures, so keep an eye out for that(!) In the mean time however, I will stay active on Twitter and Facebook and bring you my last few weeks of flying in the world’s last frontier here in Papua, Indonesia.