WEBSITE EDITOR'S PAGE
BIRDS OF A FEATHER INTERNATIONAL
Bill B., posted9/17/11
Our Canadian friends demonstrated true hospitality & great hosting skills during our 2011 Calgary convention. A great time was had by all & the efforts by the convention committee headed by Ian G. set a new standard for excellence. If you ever get a chance to attend a convention you will be glad you did.
Just be careful when you take a bathroom break during the business meeting or you may be elected to serve. That happened to me & I am now the Treasurer/Alt Sec'y of BOAF Int'l & I follow in the footsteps of some really dedicated servants & am humbled to join the procession. I will try to be helpful when & where I can. Come see us, ya heah? BB
From Beth C. Int’l BOAF Sec’y Big Bird Nov 2010
I want to address a serious topic. Birds of a Feather is a life saver to many alcoholic pilots. It is a forum where we can discuss aspects of our sobriety and situations that we might not be comfortable talking about in a regular AA meeting. For most of us, honest sharing can only occur if we can trust that what we share will not be shared with others. As in AA, each BOAF nest is autonomous in terms of who they include in their membership and what goes on in their meetings. So it is up to each group’s conscience to do what needs to be done to provide a safe place where members can openly share.
I know members who don’t want the general AA membership to know they are pilots (or likewise members of BOAF). I know one who when asked, says he is a heavy equipment operator. My own nest recently realized that our box with Big Book, sign in sheets, etc. was in a closet at the local FBO where we meet. Anyone at the FBO could have opened the box and had access to our information. We have since obtained a locking gun box which now holds membership lists, etc.As the New Year approaches, I ask each nest to carefully review their focus and practices regarding confidentiality of members information and sharing. I am suggesting a group 10th step where each nest reviews how effective they are in carrying the message to the suffering alcoholic as well as providing a safe, loving environment where recovery can occur. Please take the time to review your own nest and make any appropriate changes
*********From Omar S. in Mexico City on 10/31/10
Scott, hope you're doing great I was
wondering if you could please change my phone number to this one
+527772743016 on the solo birds page, I have good news to start the
group in Mexico city, we are going to start with a monthly meeting every
last Friday of the month at Mexico city's airport terminal 2 starting
January, I let you know when to place that information on the website
hopefully next week I'm just waiting for an authorization from the union
to use the space thanks again and hope to hear from you soon.
From TJ at the Charlotte Nest
From Beth, our
Big Bird, on the new LAX North nest
From Corey in Houston
Just an update on the IAH nest. We celebrated our 2 year anniversary last week with a “Happy Birds-day!” Cake and goodies! I gave a brief timeline of where I was and how the nest came about to the group. A topic of “It works if you work it and how far we’ve come and why” tended to prevail through the discussion. We will be handing over the chairperson spot for the next yearly service. He should be contacting you soon.
From one of the DFW Convention Speakers
I wanted to thank you and all the participants,
I really enjoyed this past weekend. I loved the presentation on Friday as both Fr. Mark and Dave talked about the transition into recovery.
I thought Scott R on Saturday was amazing. What a testament of this program. I am in awe of how he walked through all of that. He deserves the riches of sobriety, he certainly paid his dues. Most of all, I loved learning more about BOAF. What a wonderful support/organization. When I was in direct care, I spoke of this program, now I feel I understand it more clearly. I will pass my experience onto the staff, especially of those working with the airline members.
A message from one of our DFW Convention Speakers:
Just wanted to take a second to thank you all for your hospitality, kindness and fellowship this past weekend. I have worked in the field of Addiction Treatment for over 20 years , 14 of those with Fathers Martin’s Ashley , and have actually had the honor of working directly with some of the Birds and their families. This past weekend was and will remain one of the highlights of my years of work in the field. The closeness and unity that I was allowed to be part of was something that few will get to experience and be a part of. I hope that our time with you on Friday and Saturday was worthwhile and productive, and if the opportunity to ever work with you all again comes up I would clearly welcome that chance. Thanks again for what I consider the opportunity of a lifetime
Keeping Carrying Your Message
Here are a couple of letters from folks about the recent passing of Richey G. :
You had better enlarge the website because there is NO way one can write a small article on Richey Grude. She had tooooooooooooo many great attributes and meant so much to tooooo many of us for a small article. She was one swell lady and well loved by all of us. You could only look at Lee's eyes and see the love he had for her and visa versa. One great couple to be remembered by many.
This seems so appropriate for our dear Richey:
FOR A SPECIAL TRIBUTE TO RICHEY G.
Posted 12-28-08:I would like to borrow a Richeyism to describe a recent event.
I recently had the pleasure of doing a two week cruise from San Diego through the cannel to Fort Lauderdale.I went to the "Friends of Bill" meetings each day and for the first few days there were only two of us. We just had an informal meeting and mostly talked about our programs. One day we were talking about meetings we attend and she said to me that one of her favorite meetings was one in DC. that was a bunch of " mostly retired pilots". It was called Birds of a Feather.
After I got up off the floor, I said that I new some of those people and dropped a few names on her.(Probably a rule violation). We had a good laugh about that and became instant friends.We were later joined by more people and had a group of about five. Two of those had recent relapses. One after 17 years and one after 24 years. I could have told their stories before they did. Stopped going to meetings, stopped working the program, etc. Anyway it was a real lesson to listen to them. The other fellow that joined us was having a little more trouble figuring things out. He was a retired Naval Officer and had been through the Navy Program. He was only drinking " no alcohol" beer. At least that was what he said. I suggested to him, that it wasn't really "NO" alcohol, and it was a very dangerous path. He eventually stopped coming.
The best part is that I
learned a lot from every one of these people and it made my sobriety
Hi, my name is Tom C
and I cannot believe that I have not found BOAF until today.
© Daniel S. 02/06
There you are before
Convulsions take and
Here I stand before
Your world is falling
It tells you to keep
I see your tears and
It clearly is
You are just like me
The road laid out for
I’ll say a prayer for
Copyright Daniel S. 02/06
From the Grapevine
"Once during a period of weekend
piloting, I flew a light plane into the clouds over some hilly terrain
and got lost. The plane was without blind-flight instruments and I
was without training in blind flying, and therefore in moment-to-moment
peril of a fatal tailspin. I tried to climb out of the cloudbank
but couldn't make it; it was too high. To try to get under it
might wind me up in a pile of burning junk on a hillside, or in a power
line. Whether I went up, or down, or stayed where I was, my life
was in great danger. I was a clammy, sweaty scared.
"I did not hang onto this spiritual insight.
After a day or two of awed reflection I forgot it, resumed my usual ways
and usual drinking, which was progressing toward a climax. Seven
years later, again fogged in, with all courses of action blocked in
alcoholic impasse, I met some people who had "come to believe that a
Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity."
Remembering then my deliverance from the cloud-shrouded hills, it was
easier than it might otherwise have been to believe as they did."
"Once during a period of weekend piloting, I flew a light plane into the clouds over some hilly terrain and got lost. The plane was without blind-flight instruments and I was without training in blind flying, and therefore in moment-to-moment peril of a fatal tailspin. I tried to climb out of the cloudbank but couldn't make it; it was too high. To try to get under it might wind me up in a pile of burning junk on a hillside, or in a power line. Whether I went up, or down, or stayed where I was, my life was in great danger. I was a clammy, sweaty scared."Though not at that time religiously inclined, I prayed. Then I put the nose toward the ground and held it on a steep glide, peering ahead into the murk. Presently I saw a farmhouse immediately ahead. I held a wing on it, circling, and saw a small pasture where a crash landing could be made. Gliding in for the landing, scarcely ten feet off the ground, I could see under the cloud structure. The farmhouse was high on a hillside; below was clear air over a long valley. I flew on. In a quarter of an hour I was safely landed at my destination airport, limp with gratitude and wonder. A power greater than myself had, in response to my prayer, restored me to safety! This happened seven years before I came into AA.
"I did not hang onto this spiritual insight. After a day or two of awed reflection I forgot it, resumed my usual ways and usual drinking, which was progressing toward a climax. Seven years later, again fogged in, with all courses of action blocked in alcoholic impasse, I met some people who had "come to believe that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity." Remembering then my deliverance from the cloud-shrouded hills, it was easier than it might otherwise have been to believe as they did."- The AA Grapevine, 1954
Is God Your "Co" Pilot?
Like many pilots, I first got
interested in flying airplanes by reading books as a youngster and
watching flying movies late into the night when in grade school and high
school. One movie that really stood out for me was God is my
Copilot. I really enjoyed that one and I have since then
read the book by Colonel Robert L. Scott at least three times.
One way I have found that helps me is
allow my higher power to be more active in my life. And so now
here comes my point: In the movies I am always in control of
everything. There is only room for God to be my co-pilot.
In recovery, I have to make more room in my life for him than that.
So that is why I say to pilots who are new or years into the program
A MECHANICAL APPROACH TO THE 12 STEPS
Step 1: I had an "Old Clunker" of an airplane parked at the airport. I had just about given up on it but decided to make a wholehearted attempt to restore it.
Step 2: I couldn't fix it, but I came to believe someone could.
Step 3: I turned the plane over to an A & P mechanic.
Step 4: I took an inventory of all that was wrong with the "Old Clunker."
Step 5: I shared the inventory with the mechanic.
Step 6: I helped take off the old parts.
Step 7: I let the mechanic handle the rest.
Step 8: We made a list of all the parts that were needed and got together and went over them.
Step 9: I admitted I hadn't checked the oil and fluids properly, or fixed the other things that were going wrong. It was my responsibility to take care of the plane, and I had not. I wanted to help, but being unfamiliar with the process, I allowed the mechanic to fix things. The airplane turned out beautifully!
Step 10: I check the oil, fluids, tires etc. more regularly, and when I don't the engine doesn't hum.
Step 11: I call on the mechanic whenever there is trouble, asking him to fix the plane.
Step 12: That mechanic and I have become such close friends that we decided to take a trip across the country, and we stopped to help all that needed it along the way.