19 May 2008

Winding Down, May 2008

I'm weird.
(And a large chorus of acquaintances sing "Amen" in unison!)

I hate leaving home... always have.
I like the IDEA of traveling. I'm pleased reviewing memories gathered while I travel. I enjoy sharing adventures with people I love. But I hate loading the car. I hate not having all the "stuff" that makes my life comfortable within easy reach. I hate boring long distance drives. I'm on edge while driving to make a flight, knowing an accident along the way or car trouble could delay us long enough to miss the flight, (and the tickets I buy these days are worthless under those circumstances.) Sometimes I wish I had never agreed to travel in the first place.
I'm envious of people who gush about preparing for a trip, but know I'll never be one of them... it's just never gonna be me.

We returned from 9 days in our beloved Destin last night, after driving most of the day, pulling into our drive at Midnight. We put lots more good times into memory, ate fantastic caught-yesterday seafood, and spent a little time on one of the most beautiful beaches in the world. I'm glad we did it and look forward to the next trip. But is there anyone I can hire to make sure we have everything we need, then load the car and drive us?

One of the things I love about Destin is the airshow. Destin is just South of Eglin Air Force Base and just East of Hurlburt Field. So in addition to the normal civil aircraft you assume will be checking the beach, we see some pretty expensive military metal doing their "training". This time we saw the normal C-130's and CH-53E's flying low enough to take your breath away. But in addition to that I can add a personal first: I saw two V-22's in airplane mode, about 5 minutes apart, flying Eastbound, not too low. Neat.
I'm hopeful that'll happen more often.

So it's back to work tonight after almost two weeks of absence. Long breaks away from work make me rusty, so I'll climb back into my seat at the controls when I've finished my preflight and reconnect with all the levers, buttons, switches, and instruments. It's good to be home and back into my routine.

Now, to truly get back into the swing of things, can I order up an exciting night accident scene to share with you?
We'll see.

Oh, and just one more thing...
In my email this morning I found something I'd like to share with all Veterans.
Direct link here.
Thanks Cary.


cary said...

First, in order to be a part of the chorus that says "Amen" I would have to be absent any weirdness in myself.

That being said, we'll move right along, and say - you are welcome. And, to perpetuate what could be a very long chain of back-and-forth, thank you.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for your service. You're a great American!

Tumo said...

Hurlburt Field! C-130's! Man you are stoking the memory fires of my Spooky days! I remember catching some "healthy" targets with the ALLTV System while crossing over the beach! Goodtimes, Goodtimes (LOL)
So here is to soft warm sea breezes and the fond memories of the places and loves they carried!

And here's to you for your service! Like the Ol' man always says "Bad war, Good Soldier-Welcome home Kid"! Thanks Brother!

The Old Man said...

GB - did not fall off face of the earth - went into Cleveland Clinic 5/10/08. The patient-availible computers won't allow me to log into my blog, so I'm contacting you this way. Got your e-mail, will reply after I'm sprung.

skiingman said...

I still think V-22s mostly serve as an example of how much money you can spend trying to make a useful product out of an attractive yet bad idea, but they sure are neat to watch in action. I see them fairly often here in Albuquerque going into and out of Kirtland, and it is very cool how they go from airplane mode to landing.

Greybeard said...

Thanks for sharing your thoughts.
Only time will tell if the V-22 is, as you say, "an attractive yet bad idea".
Like so many things these days, the money spent on the V-22 can partly be laid at the feet of "two many chefs" cooking the soup. In it's most critical phase of flight, this thing is a helicopter. Trying to put anything other than seasoned helicopter pilots in the cockpit of the V-22 may have led to a couple disasters... it's NOT a great helicopter OR airplane, so pilots flying the thing need to have an instinctive feel about flying it. The Marana, AZ disaster that caused the shutdown/virtual start-over of the program would not have happened to a helicopter pilot fully aware of the dangers of settling with power.

No other country has produced anything to compare, so we are out front with the technology. The spinoffs in civilian life will have a dramatic impact in my industry... EMS.
A flight requiring an hour in the BK117 I fly will be accomplished in 20 minutes in the civilian offspring of the V-22, the BA 609. Think of the impact of that on "The Golden Hour"! I'll retire before they field that machine, but I'd sure appreciate having one available if I ever have "the big one!"

Lot's of money spent on new technology? No question.
Is it worth it?
I can't be objective, so I'll defer to others.

OlePrairiedog said...

I salute you Greybeard. thank you for your service, and thank you for being a weird friend.