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AUSTIN EXECUTIVE AIRPORT
A History of Austin's Newest General Aviation Airport
R
on
W. H
enRiksen
Chapter 12
lenges--from riding motorcycles to building
airports--is in many ways more rewarding
because of the problems you encounter and
the creative ways you choose to unravel them.
Since that ride over Black Bear Pass, Terry
and I have spoken often about the "oil filter fix"
and other incidents just like it, times when we
secured a broken fender with an old shoelace
or replaced a missing link of chain with a bor-
rowed chunk of barbed wire or the time we
lost the bolt on the gear shift lever and stole a
matching bolt off of the front brake lever, an
all-important piece of equipment, but not as
indispensable as being able to change gears.
These stories are a point of pride with us and
we agree that the occasional breakdown re-
sulted in some of the best times we've had on
these weekend getaways. When the dust has
settled, I'm fond of these moments because
they allowed me (forced me, really) to think,
to improvise and, if need be, to jury-rig a way
out of a bad situation.
Whether I'm motorcycling high-mountain
trails or racing cars or managing a telecom
company or even transforming a shaggy turf
airstrip into a jet-capable airport, I try my
hardest to embrace the challenge. Now that
Austin Executive Airport is up and running,
I feel much the way I felt on that chilly day in
late summer when the three of us ambled into
Ouray with a Suzuki leaking oil--that, diffi-
cult as it sometimes is, I'm proud of what I've
accomplished, of my willingness to see things
as they are, of my capacity to implement solu-
tions in unique ways, and I understand that
in significant respects I'm a better person for
the experience.