Journey back through the culture of the 1970s in Mexico and the U.S. as a young surfer befriends indigenous Zapotecs, smuggles weed across the Rio Grande, encounters law enforcement on both sides of the border, and learns to fly.
In 1979, a Mexican army truck and a small U.S.-registered airplane race toward each other on a remote airstrip in southern Mexico. Their game of chicken marks the end of a young surfer’s true-life smuggling odyssey involving midnight powwows with indigenous Zapotecs of Oaxaca, paddling kilos of marijuana across the Rio Grande on surfboards, learning to fly, and a stint in the Oaxaca State Penitentiary.
Narrated by the main character, Flying Into the Sun is not just a true-crime adventure memoir. It is an introspective, coming-of-age tale that weaves through a secret Mexico and chronicles the fast-changing 1970s in the U.S. with its emergent culture of long hair and drugs, rebellious youth versus hostile law enforcement, and the music and pop themes of the times. The author worked his way up through general aviation to become a pilot for American Airlines, where he flew twenty years and retired as captain. Previous literary endeavors include publishing the insubordinate aviation tabloid Houston Air News, as well as writing stories for national and regional publications such as General Aviation News, the Portsmouth Herald and the Texas Flyer.
PRAISE FOR FLYING INTO THE SUN
"On a dark desert highway, cool wind in my hair; Warm smell of colitas, rising up through the air . . . . Oh, the good ol' days of red-haired Mexican pot in the 70s. Paul Ogier tells an engaging and entertaining story about his youthful misadventures as a drug runner at a time when people were discovering the joys of marijuana. Not only is "Flying Into The sun" well written, but there is a quiet wit about it that had me laughing out loud at several sections. As a coming of age story, this is certainly one of the best. It's insightful and has its touching moments. The ending left me both sad and uplifted that the main character had finally reached a level of maturity that set him on another path to his dreams. But the next time I fly, I will be wondering what youthful indiscretions the captain had committed!"
~Patricia Griffon, Author of "Blind Reason"
"Yup, I love books. And I'm always happy to find out about a surf/travel book that takes me back to places I've been to, or back to a time I've missed. Flying into the Sun is a mix of both...a time before smartphone navigation in rental cars or even planes, and what more a surfboard can be used for than just riding waves...
Worth a read."
"This is fantastic!! It's going to be BIG! I see a movie!"
~Chris Cantara, pilot & owner of Seaside Aviation, LLC
"I began Flying Into the Sun with my pilot's cap on, expecting a tale of youthful bounds-pushing and flying anecdotes. Well, by page two I realized a lot more than bounds-pushing was unfolding, and the flying I expected was turning into chemically-enhanced and Mexican-grown flying of the kind best enjoyed by a campfire on a secluded beach. By the story's halfway point, I was as deep into the marijuana, hash, and coke world of smugglers and risk-takers as I'd ever been, and loving every moment of Paul Ogier's narrow escapes. Until escape was no longer an option. If you are a pilot, you will find yourself back in the cockpit on your first solo cross country...you know, the one you screwed up but managed to survive? In Ogier's case, managing to survive airborne and car-borne cross countries was both physically and financially dicey. The author's knowledgeable weaving of songs of the 70s (with a backhand to disco) to add color and texture to Flying Into the Sun is simply brilliant. But this is not a book about flying or music or even youthful risk-taking and consequences.This is a timeless story of an insatiable appetite that drives some elements of virtually all societies to create markets and methods to feed that often-deadly hunger."
"If you spent anytime in Mexico in the 60's and 70's you will appreciate this read as a coming of age story. Mexico was a surfers paradise, the sweet unspoiled Mexican frontier was made for youth and adventure. Paul does a good job of showing how one matured from a surf bum to the left seat for a major airline. Understanding where you've been helps know where you want to go...especially if it's a Mexican prison. Yeah, it's that good."
SOME COMMENTS FROM FACEBOOK
Brett McMillan Enjoyed reading the book, especially the trips through Mexico. Took a lot of balls, risk to do that back then. Interesting in a historical perspective in that it’s mostly legal now. Glad to see your success later in life as a retired Captain.
Terry Hayes Truly enjoyed the book, thank you, it was a great read!! We are the same generation and it was definitely a great time with more adventure back then. Loved your descriptions of Houston, have lived in Cypress since 1989. I yearn for the days where you describe flying from West Houston and Weiser and up Barker Cypress....back then it was a two-lane road with prairie on both sides once you got north of 529. Today it's a median divided thoroughfare. Any plans to write another book?
Dwight Rathmell It's a good read, I have driven through many of the same places in this book in a VW bus
Andy Keeton First class read, enjoyed it !!!
Michael Woodrum Just finished it, as a 68 year older, it took me back to my misbegotten young!! Those were great days, sure miss those times!! 😎😎
Phillip Young Great read. From back in the day when you could cruise all over Mexico safely. If you had a VW, you could break down in the middle of nowhere and get parts or help because VWs were everywhere.
Jeffrey Utter I thoroughly enjoyed the book!
Paul Karinja Very cool
Bill O'Connor Prob finish tonite! Well done! Reads well!
G Bruce Eskildsen Such a good book really enjoying it. I was doing a lot of flying in those days crop dusting. Lots of things happening. Country Roads take me back and I would even enjoy more second time!
Charley McCrone Read the whole book on the way from Anchorage to Honolulu! We have some things besides music in common. Fascinating story!
Steve Bowman Reading it now, it's awesome!....
Jeff Anderson Good book! I remember when the rainbow (well kinda 😁) hit the scene, the price of weed went up, but it was good smoke! Those were the days, road trips to Houston, port Arthur, Galveston, bring back the mean green!! Miss those days
Glen Lockaby We call him The Tree Top Flyers…
Crew Chamberlain About a 1/4 of the way in. Good read.
Steve Wright Interesting read; I enjoyed it
Devik Wiener Oh my word! Those beautiful long seeded spicy lime green Oaxacan buds! Those (70’s) WERE the days
Shane Dudley Luv it!!!!
Stan Baca Great read!
Rudy Escamilla Look forward to reading your book. Grew up in Corpus Christi, Tx and surfed Padre Island in the early 70’s. Great memories of catching waves at St Joe’s (Port Aransas). Thankful to this day that surfing was a big part of my life then. Oh yeah, weed was also plentiful up and down the beach soon after a tropical storm/hurricane had passed through.
Ken Russell Loved the book!
Rosales Marco Excelentes fotografías muy bien conservadas. El libro ha de ser interesante su prólogo e introducción te adicta a seguir su lectura,.
Duane Schiller Enjoying it very much. Great read.
Kenny Lynch I have read many books about hero’s and crooks and this one that when you start you will not want to put it down.
Randy Ivie Just got through reading it. Great book. Once I started it I couldn’t put it down.
Timmy Wright If you knew me you would know that I'm a story teller. Reading your book has inspired me to someday share my story with the world and I would hope I could just tell it like it was just like you did without the exaggeration and embellishment that some people feel necessary to keep the reader entertained. A good story does that, whether it's a book or a movie. I'm reading a book right now and it's from a great writer and an amazing story, but he's taken the use of the big words to another level that's gotten downright irritating. Thanks again for your amazing book.
Kevin Craig Sounds like a Jimmy Buffett song
Duane Schiller Enjoying it very much. Great read
Dwight Rathmell It's cool story
Jesse Houle In Search of Captain Zero on mushrooms ...
Terry Stewart One of the best books I've read recently.
Kenny Lynch I have read many books about hero’s and crooks, and this is one that when you start you will not want to put it down. A well written book.
Timmy Wright Couldn't put it down! I believe it was a very accurate account of the adventures and struggles the author and his accomplices went through during this period in his life. Large print, easy bedtime reading without a bunch of big words that no one really uses or understands that most authors throw in today to sound smarter than they really are. I can't wait to pass this on to my surfer buddy that I travel to Mexico with, as it is gonna remind him of some of our South of the Border escapades, minus the drug smuggling.
Todd, Toro Prieto is somewhere behind him
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