After completing pre-flight checks, sitting in the airplane and physically pulling back on the yoke, causing the tires to lift off the tarmac was a pretty sweet experience. Don, the instructor, controlled communication with the tower, and the throttle/fuel mix. I concentrated (INTENSELY) on the yoke and pedals. I held the yoke and pedals for 25 of the 30 minutes that we were up with Don taking over to land (thankfully).
Don spent $60,000 accumulating the flight time to complete his Private Pilot's License, and that was ten years ago. Since we don't have that kind of cash (and PSU Education Abroad isn't looking to hire an on call pilot), I think going for a PPL is out of the question, but MAN what a great way to spend a sunny Saturday in central Pennsylvania.
Thanks Kate, I love you!