In the Spring of 2016, Dr. Smithies recorded his memories of his experiences as a pilot and flight instructor. These recordings were edited and are presented here in 18 “chapters,” each covering a different aspect of what he referred to as his “airplane adventures.”

Chapter 1: “Childhood”

Dr. Smithies explains growing up in a small English town and getting inspired to become a pilot when he saw a movie called “Biggles.”

Chapter 2: “First Logbook”

Dr. Smithies talks about what’s in his first pilot’s logbook, which details his first official flying lessons.

Chapter 3: “1977”

Dr. Smithies describes flying again after a 14-year hiatus. Included his first flight in a glider plane.

Chapter 4: “Medical Certificate”

Smithies has his medical certificate, (which is required for solo flying), withdrawn because he has hypertension. As a result, he learns instrument flying while he is forced to ride in the passenger seat.

Chapter 5: “Australia”

Dr. Smithies flies in Australia while on a scientific visit.

Chapter 6: “First Thunderstorm”

Dr. Smithies’s flying instructor and friend, Field Morey, tells Smithies to fly through a thunderstorm.

Chapter 7: “Aerobatics”

Dr. Smithies learns some aerobatic maneuvers, and meets the author of a favorite aerobatic manual while he’s visiting a friend in Sewannee, Tenn.

Chapter 8: “Firetruck Story”

On the flight back from his Sewannee visit, Dr. Smithies’s plane malfunctions and, in fear that he might need help, the airport calls a firetruck for assistance.

Chapter 9: “Color Blind”

Dr. Smithies talks about growing up with color blindness

Chapter 10: “Icicle Story”

Dr. Smithies has trouble keeping his plane at the right altitude and has to face either losing oxygen or having ice accumulate on his plane’s wings.

Chapter 11: “Famous Airports”

Dr. Smithies flew when it was still possible for a small, personal plane to fly into major airports like Chicago’s O’Hare. He talks about a few that he flew into.

Chapter 12: “‘I Think I’ll Sit for a Minute'”

Dr. Smithies and a friend run into trouble when flying to a convention.

Chapter 13: “Diamond Altitude”

Dr. Smithies trains to be able to fly in the coveted “diamond formation” in a glider plane.

Chapter 14: “Hawks”

Smithies talks about the unique way in which hawks are able to help pilots avoid danger.

Chapter 15: “Transatlantic Flight, Part 1”

Dr. Smithies begins training for his record-breaking transatlantic flight with Field Morey. They are on their way to attend the weeding of Dr. Smithies’s cousin.

Chapter 16: “Transatlantic Flight, Part 2”

Dr. Smithies and Morey start the actual journey toward England, by way of Iceland.

Chapter 17: “Transatlantic Flight, Part 3”

Dr. Smithies and Morey try to set another record-breaking flight as they fly back toward the U.S.

Chapter 18: “Transatlantic Flight, Part 4”

Smithies and Morey finish the last leg of their “great adventure.”