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    Navigation to Dakar, some additional thoughts
    From: Gary LaPook
    Date: 2011 Feb 13, 02:15 -0800
    Amelia wrote:

    “When we first sighted the African coast, thick haze prevailed and for some time no position
    sight had been possible. My navigator indicated that we should turn south. Had we done so, a
    half hour would have brought us to Dakar. But a "left turn" seemed to me in order and after
    fifty miles of flying along the coast, we found ourselves at St. Louis, Senegal.” (Last Flight, page
    119)


    I note that Earhart put "left turn" in quotation marks. I wonder if in 1937 the phrase "left turn" might have had some slang meaning such as wink, wink, "I'm just kidding" or "this is a joke" or whether there was a then current story about someone using that phrase as some kind of inside joke or other tongue-in-cheek meaning.

    I also wonder if Noonan's note saying they were 79 miles from Dakar was also tongue-in-cheek, stating this to such a high level of precision when he knew that there was a large uncertainty band (71 NM, 82 SM) at 1836 Z. It was like saying 'we have 79 miles to go, plus or minus 82 miles,' meaning they may have already passed Dakar or that they might still have 161 SM to go.

    gl


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