Nuria DeFrancisco – A Modern Woman

Posted in Mixed Nuts on February 4th, 2009 by MadDog
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When Nuria was here visiting her Spanish friends, her excitement about Madang was refreshing to us. I wrote about her dive on The Green Dragon here.

Nuria studied business at university. When she finished at uni, she got a job as an administrator, but did not like it. She told me that it didn’t let her use her brain enough.

She shot off in a different direction when she decided to become an airline hostess – we call them “cabin attendants” now – what a silly change of terminology. “Host” or “hostess” carries dignity. “Cabin attendant” sounds like someone with the unfortunate job of hosing down washrooms – not that there’s anything undignified about that. I’m not here to disrespect anybody’s job.

She liked the flying, but she still wasn’t getting her head involved enough. She seems to be a person who requires some serious challenges to be happy.

After five months of hostessing, she diverged again and trudged back to school to become a pilot. After two years of pilot training while still working as a hostess, she had to face three years of job searching to find a pilot’s position. She told me that that period was very difficult for her.

Finally, all the study and hard work paid off – throwing in a pinch of luck. She got a job with Swiftair flying an Embraer-120 turboprop. Here’s a photo of the plane:

The Embraer 120 as flown by Nuria DeFrancisco

And here is Nuria in the cockpit at Palma de Mallorca:

Nuria in the cockpit

Nuria worked with Swiftair for two years.

Then, as she told me, she was “enormously lucky” to get a job flying the Airbus A320 for Vueling, an air cargo outfit. Here’s a shot of the plane she flies:

Airbus A320 with Nuria handling the joystick??

She told me that her job makes her “very happy.” Here is a shot of Nuria in the cockpit of her Airbus:

Nuria in her airplane looking happy

She certainly looks happy to me!

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A Real Pilot Flies the Bomber

Posted in Under the Sea on February 2nd, 2009 by MadDog
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A couple of weeks ago we had some new Spanish visitors. One young lady, Nuria DeFrancisco, was a keen diver. We did a dive on Saturday and she seemed to enjoy it. Then she started talking about the B-25 Bomber – The Green Dragon – at Wongat Island. She seemed to be very interested – not a usual thing for chicks!

They were flying out on Monday, so I said if she really wanted to do the bomber, we could go out at nine on Sunday morning. That would give her sufficient time to lose the nitrogen built up in her blood before she flew out on Monday.

Here’s a photo of Nuria sitting in the cockpit of The Green Dragon:

Nuria in the cockpit of The Green Dragon

Here she poses in front of the vertical stabilizer:

Nuria in front of the vertical stabilizer of The Green Dragon

The visibility, never the best at this location, was dismal. Fortunately, everything you need to see is up-close. This is a very cute shot of Nuria riding the dorsal twin 50 calibre Browning M2 machineguns:

Nuria riding the dorsal twin 50 gun turret on The Green Dragon

What is amusing about all this is that on the way back I learned why she has such an interest in aircraft. She is a pilot for a Spanish airline! She flies an Airbus A320. I didn’t have a clue. This is a first for me, and a first for Faded Glory.

I did get a couple of other nice shots on the dive. Here’s a photo of a tiny Black Saddled Toby (Canthigaster valentini)  with Nuria in the background:

Black Saddled Toby (Canthigaster valentini)

There are always Ribbon Eels (Rhinomuraena quaesita)  under the wing of the The Green Dragon. This time it was a juvemile:

Ribbon Eel (Rhinomuraena quaesita) under the wing of The Green Dragon

I have shown an image of an adult Ribbon Eel here.

We’re always happy to have visitors in Madang. It’s an out-of-the-way place and it’s expensive to get here. So, we always get a kick from new faces.

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