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Miao Reaches for Sky

Chinese film actress Miao Pu is expected to become mainland China's first film star to receive a private jet license, having stuck to her flying lessons in 2009 even though it was also a busy year for her film career. "When I was a teenage girl, I always dreamed about flying. When my financial condition permitted me, I applied to an aviation school in Beijing," she says. "That was in April 2007. I believe in following your heart, not waiting until you are too old to make your dreams come true." After a successful medical examination, she went through ground courses on theory, she says: "To be honest, as a graduate of an art college, the aviation theory courses were very difficult for me. There were nine courses in total including meteorology, aerodynamics, and the principles of flight." It was necessary for her to fit in private ground instruction in between work on film and TV shoots, she says. "The schedule usually meant that I woke up early at 6 am, jogged for half an hour and then went to school. I spent the whole day learning. You can't imagine how many books I read. When I piled them up, they almost reached my waist." The ground courses were conducted in Chinese, while she was given practical flight instruction by a U.S. teacher, which also gave her the opportunity to improve her spoken English skills. She also has some words of encouragement for Beijing residents interested in flight. "Well, I think this is a misunderstanding. Becoming an amateur pilot is not as expensive as most people think. Beijing residents have now become used to paying almost 200,000 yuan ($29,411) for cars, which is the same as what an aviation school charges for an individual's tuition fees."

December 9, 2009

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