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By rats404
I was due to fly the aeroplane today, and as I'd booked it (group member), I duly got up, planned the flights, checked NOTAM and Met etc, and headed to the aerodrome. My normal excitement and enthusiasm was lacking however.

On the short drive to the hangar, I became increasingly anxious, and really didn't feel like I particularly wanted to fly.

I'm relatively current, the met was good, the aircraft has nil defects and I know it well.

I got as far as opening the hangar doors, but then climbed into the cockpit, and quietly considered how I was feeling. I didn't want to fly. I didn't feel I was up to the job. I was even perhaps a little scared. This is very out of character for me - I love my flying with a passion, every aspect of it.

So I went back and thought about the IMSAFE mnemonic. If you're not aware of it, I strongly recommend you take a look at the link below.

I realised that I'm seriously fatigued. I've been working very hard, mostly living away from home for some months. The week off I had a couple of weeks ago was spent walking 70 miles across Hadrian's Wall in the North of England, again sleeping away from home. I'm not a kid any more (I'm 59).

I thought about trivial little things recently where I'd forgotten tiny routine items I normally do, like resetting the trip meter in the car when I refuel it.

So I packed up my kit, closed the hangar doors and drove home. On reflection, I am absolutely sure I did the right thing.

Pilots in the main have quite healthy egos. We are goal oriented. But although it was hard for me (I'm going to cancel a trip next weekend that some people have really been looking forward to) I accepted the reality of the situation. I'm only human, and we can only do so much.

I'm a bit burnt out through work and other commitments, and that will definitely compromise my ability to fly at the best of my ability. I have a big chunk of time off next month, and plan to switch off mobiles, stay off the internet as much as possible, and do nothing at all work related. I need to recharge my batteries.

I'm sure that once rested, I'll be back firing on all cylinders and be itching to get airborne again.
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By Gremlin 15
good choice. it takes some guts to say 'i dont fancy it today' especially when you got as close as you did to getting airborne. gold star for you sir, and enjoy your tech free break :)
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By Flyin'Dutch'
Right thing to do and good for posting it.
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By Morten
Good decision. Never underestimate gut feelings like that.

However, on a related note, I have found that flying is exactly what 'recharges my batteries' -I tend to feel fresher and fitter after flying than I may have done before -especially so if I fly on my own :)

By all means, I don't think I have suffered from fatigue to the level you describe - but you may well find that a flight to your favourite destination, on a fair weather day, is, if not the best, at least a pretty good medicine :thumright: