Monthly Archives: March 2016

Compétences linguistiques langue anglaise (FCL.055)

La semaine dernière j’ai passé le contrôle de compétences linguistiques langue anglaise (FCL.055) VFR (1). Je m’avais mis cet objectif au début de l’année et au moment de démarrer avec la préparation j’avais un peu de difficulté à voir comment préparer l’examen. C’est la raison d’écrire ce petit article, pour partager les quatre ressources que j’ai utilisé.

VolfictifLe site du « Ministère de l’environnement, de l’énergie et de la mer » (2) offre quelques bonnes exemples de comme le contrôle se déroulera (un exemple de vol fictif et deux exemples de écoute de bande). Je conseille de les reviser, surtout celui du vol fictif pour voir comme le scénario va être présenté au candidat.

Autres exemples d’écoute de bande. Le magazine de la Fédération Française d’Aviation, Info Pilote, a depuis des années une page dédiée à l’utilisation de l’anglais dans les communications aéronautiques.

  • La compilation des enregistrements de ces bandes se trouvent sur le site « Anglais pour voler ».
  • Des versions PDF de chaque page dédiées aux communications en anglais des différents numéros d’ Info Pilote pendant des années peuvent se trouver ici.  (c’est utile si tu n’étais pas abonné au magazine il y a 10 années ou si tu ne gardes pas les vieux magazines).

Avec ces deux dernières ressources tu peux bien préparer l’exercice d’écoute de bande et voir des différents niveaux de difficulté.

Finalement, pour voir des exemples des situations inhabituelles avec des traductions proposées de français à anglais, cette autre site, Cockpitseeker, a un bonne répertoire (+300 situations).

Effort. Je m’étais mis des horaires pour étudier rigoureusement. Finalement, je n’ai pas suivi ces horaires que dans la moitié de la moitié des jours avant l’épreuve, mais j’ai bien étudié entre 12-15 heures de lecture et écoute de bande, avec un bon résultat à l’examen.

(1) Ancienne FCL1.028.

(2) Le nom du ministère peut changer assez suivent, je suggère de cliquer sur les liens ou faire un petit recherche sur l’internet.

(3) Pour l’inscription à l’examen, toute est bien expliqué sur le site du ministère, et la mise en œuvre d’un site internet dédié, OCEAN.

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Flight excursion to Rocamadour and Saint Cirq Lapopie, via Montech and Moissac

Rocamadour is a small village built in the gorges of a tributary to the Dordogne river. Several of its houses, churches and shops are partially built within the rocks. With about 500 inhabitants it receives 1.5 million of visitors per year, making it one of the most visited places in France and a major attraction for pilgrims, who among other things come to see a black Madonna in a chapel in the rock carved by Saint Amadour, hence the name of the village.

On the way to Rocamdour, flying from Toulouse there is Saint Cirq Lapopie, a small village built on a cliff over the river Lot. Both Rocamadour and Saint Cirq Lapopie are two of the most beautiful villages in the Midi-Pyrénées region and an obvious destination for an excursion, on the ground (which we did years ago) and flying.

Last Saturday, my father in-law and I booked a plane (a DR-400-120) at about 14:10 to fly over those places. In the way we would fly over Montech, to see the “Pente d’eau” from the sky (1), and Moissac, to see the Pont-Canal du Cacor, a bridge over the river Tarn made to allow the canal Lateral (an extension to the canal du Midi) to continue its course towards Bordeaux.

The flight would be over 175 nautical miles (over 320 km) and would last almost 2 hours with the integration to the aerodrome circuit, though in the end we spent 2 hours and 10 minutes with the rounds we made around the different spots. The navigation went rather well with no other help than the chart, compass, heading indicator and VOR (no GPS nor tablets). We had some doubts at a couple of points but we quickly found ourselves, once with the help of the controller.

Navigation log.

Navigation log.

This was the first flight in which we used the GoPRO video camera that I got last Christmas together with the suction pad to stick it to the windshield. With it we were able to have over 90 minutes of videos recorded that I have tried to shorten into the following 7 minutes:

At some points in the video the ground below seems to move slowly: we were flying at between 180 and 200 kilometres per hour, but at some 1,500 to 2,000 feet (500-700 m) above ground that is the way it feels. Be assured that the closer you get to the ground the faster it feels :-).

In the chart below you can see the route we followed: departure from Toulouse-Lasbordes (East of Toulouse), waypoint EN, Labastide-St. Pierre, Montech (South West of Montauban), Moissac (West of Castelsarrasin aerodrome), St.Cirq Lapopie (via Cahors) and Rocamadour (North West of Figeac).


Lastly, some pictures with the images of both villages and the flight log as used after the flight.

St Cirq Lapopie.

St Cirq Lapopie.





Navigation log as used after the flight.

Navigation log as used after the flight.

(1) See here a post I wrote about it.

(2) Actual engine running time: LFCL-LFCL: 2.17 FH (2h10′, with the aircraft registered as F-GORM, with an engine powered with 120 HP) (taking off and landing from runway 15).

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Santos, Pelé and the Memorial das Conquistas at Vila Belmiro

Santos is a port city about an hour drive from Sao Paulo, crucial for the development of the coffee industry in Brazil and the inflow of slaves from Africa in the XIX century. But Santos is mainly known today because of the Santos football club. The Santos football club is known because it was there where Pelé played for the most of his career. And Pelé…

Pele“My name is Ronald Reagan, I’m the President of the United States of America. But you don’t need to introduce yourself, because everyone knows who Pelé is.” Ronald Reagan (at a visit of Pelé to the White House)

In my third trip to Brazil, I wouldn’t let it pass away the opportunity to rent a car, drive from Sao Paulo to Santos and visit Vila Belmiro, the stadium of Santos FC and the museum “Memorial of the conquests” (Memorial das Conquistas).

Named the “Athlete of the Century” by the International Olympic Committee, Pelé joined Santos when he was 15 years old  (in the museum you can see his first contract as professional) and in his first complete season he finished as top scorer of the league with just 16 years. At age 17 he scored 58 goals in the league; a record that still stands today… With Pelé, Santos went to win:

Today, Santos it is neither the team with more Paulistas championships (Corinthians (27), Palmeiras (22) and Sao Paulo (21) are ahead in that ranking), it shares the lead in Brasileiraos with Palmeiras (both with 8), it is not the club with more Libertadores cups (8 teams are ahead in that ranking, led by the Argentinean Independiente (8), Boca Juniors (6), Peñarol (5)… including Brazil’s Sao Paulo with 3) nor is the American club with the most International Cup (Peñarol, Boca Juniors and Nacional de Montevideo won 3). And despite of all that, the club Santos was declared by FIFA as the best club of the XX century in the Americas (4). Because it was in Santos where Pelé played, and with him the team reached the summit in the 1960s when it lived a dream decade, the years of Os Santásticos who achieved 25 titles between 1959 and 1974. Santos, according to FIFA was the first team to reach the 10,000 goals scored and has plenty of other goal records (5). It was in that Santos that Pelé was the first attacker reaching the mark of 1,000 goals scored (6).

Those days are long gone. Nowadays the club, Santos, wanders around the 100th position of the World Best clubs (7), struggles in the Brasileirao (ending between 7th-9th in last 3 seasons) and most great players are continuously sold (8). However, Vila Belmiro still captures very well the essence of the good old times.


Vila Belmiro, or rather the Urbano Caldeira stadium, was built in 1916, close to the port of Santos. It is a small stadium with capacity for barely 17.000 spectators. Thus, for some important matches Santos plays in the bigger stadiums of Sao Paulo (mainly at Pacaembu (9)). Nevertheless, it’s a cozy stadium, where you have a good view of any spot of the field from anywhere. I liked especially the boxes at ground level named after the great players of the history of the club (10).

The tour of the stadium included a visit to the locker rooms (each locker in the local team room named after the club’s legends, with a special spot for Pelé), the tunnel to the field (well separated from the visitor’s tunnel, each at a different corner of the stadium), the field, the benches.

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An anecdote for Spanish football fans: in the corridors at field’s level a poster with the following sentence from the Spanish football commentator, Julio Maldonado, can be seen:

“Silencio… juega el Santos”, Julio Maldonado, “Maldini” (Silence… Santos’ is playing)


I definitely recommend the visit to the museum and the stadium. You will be submerged into the history of football for a couple of hours (if you chose to read everything) for just 13 R$ (about 3 euros).


(1) Arguably the most important of Brazilian states’ tournaments.

(2) Competition founded in 1959.

(3) Created in 1960, is the South American equivalent to the then Europe Cup and nowadays’ European Champion’s League.

(4) The award was based on a vote by the subscribers of the bi-monthly FIFA World Magazine (see here). For the record, with over a 42% of the vote, Real Madrid was elected as best club of the century.

(5) The goal 10,000th was scored in 1998 (the club was founded in 1912). In the museum there is a digital counter updated with each goal scored. At the time of my visit it was above the 12,200 mark. For comparison, Real Madrid had scored about 8,800 goals in official competitions only up to January 2015.

(6) Pelé holds the Guinness World Record for being the player with most goals scored, 1,279.

(7) See here the 2015 IFFHS club world ranking.

(8) Unlike Pelé, who in 1961 was declared as a national treasure in order to prevent him from being transferred to richer European clubs.

(9) At the municipal stadium of Pacaembu there is another museum, the Museo do Futebol, which I also visited and about which I may write at a later point.

(10) I only referred to Pelé in this post but in Santos played at some point in time as well: Gilmar, Coutinho, Clodoaldo, Carlos Alberto (the latter two were part of Brazil’s 1970 World Cup final roster), and most recently Robinho, Ganso and Neymar.

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Our NGOs for 2016 are…

“If you’re in the luckiest one per cent of humanity, you owe it to the rest of humanity to think about the other 99 per cent.” Warren Buffett

If there is a blog post that I am looking forward to write each year is this one. Few things can give you more pleasure than helping others (1). And in doing so I try to be as public and noisy as I can,  hoping that I may serve the causes we contribute to also from the awareness point of view.

Let’s go and see the different causes we decided to support in this 2016 (2):

Why am I “noisy” or public about these donations?

I know that between 100 and 200 of you will read this blog post. I bet with any of you that at least 50% of you will be compelled to take a look at some of these organisations above, 10% of you will consider making a donation. Do you dare thinking that 1% of you won’t actually make such donation?

I learnt about Kiva from Bruno back in 2009. Started contributing to Médecins Sans Frontières in 2010 after a conversation with Juan a couple of years before. I learnt from Slavery International at a temporary exhibit at the Museum of London. I started contributing to the sustaining of the Wikipedia after a tweet from Amalia. Discovered the Fundacion Hombres Nuevos thanks to my father’s 6-month volunteering in Bolivia. Learnt of Gapminder in TED. I started donating myself happiness with Fundacion Khanimambo after Nacho and Alberto. I started using the support to cancer research as a way to honour and encourage work colleagues going through therapy. I received the #IceBucketChallenge from Alvaro and Teresa. The latest additions, Avocats sans Frontieres and Movement du Nid, are ideas from Luca… and so on. After each cause there is someone who let me discover them.

If not one of those, I am sure that you will be able to find a cause, a NGO which resonates with you. Do yourself a favour and contribute to it. It can be just 25$, the cost of diner at a restaurant. You’ll feel much better.

“No one has ever become poor by giving.” Anne Frank, diary of Anne Frank

(1) See this recent article from the World Economic Forum “Why being generous is good for your health“.

(2) You may check out similar posts I wrote about our contributions to NGOs in 2015, 2014, 2013 and 2012.

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