As an airline stewardess, Perveen Crawford's biggest ambition was to take the pilot's seat. 'I was a stewardess for five years and I used to think how wonderful it was to be able to fly a plane.' Although she quit the airline, Perveen finally plucked up courage to enrol in a flying school. 'Actually, I dreamed about flying when I was a young girl. My father was very conservative and used to tell me that girls just don't do things like that. I thought it was very unfair. People also used to say women couldn't fly.' To prove she could do it, this mother-of-three earned her private pilot's licence in just 18 months. And she was a trailblazer: a few women followed her path and went on to become pilots for Cathay Pacific and Dragonair. 'When you are up there in the clouds you feel powerful, smart and in total control,' says Perveen who flies single-engine planes. 'It is also very quiet up there, so you have this sense of peace. It gives you a sense of freedom and of achieving something. 'Last Valentine's Day my husband finally submitted and I took him up with me for the first time. I have never seen him putty in my hands before!'