Saturday, January 30, 2010

Flight of Fancy

As I mentioned a few days ago, SPC C got his first ride on a military helicopter this past week. It was also the first time I'd been on a rotary-wing aircraft since May.


A couple of my buddies who are company commanders also came along for the ride. They're great guys.


One of my other buddies also flew up with us, though he looks a bit uncertain in the photo above.


Perhaps because I planned ahead and brought along some M&Ms and Skittles, I was able to sit in the front compartment of the aircraft. It was odd being on a bird that didn't travel with the gunner's hatch open. Of course, with no weapon in the hatch (that part was odd, given my experience last year in Iraq) there was no need for the hatch to be open.

And given that it was -5 degrees outside the helicopter when we were at altitude (as opposed to 108 degrees one night when I was in Iraq), I'm very glad the hatch was closed!


Part of the terrain we flew over had lots of snow, while some of the valleys had almost no snow.


To the north of where we were going there were lots of mountains, and a lot more snow.


Many of the towns we flew over had mosques with prominent minarets, such as in the photo above.

Our Pegasus.

I had really missed flying, but hadn't realized how much until this mission. I was able to wear headphones during the flights, so I could hear the crew as they conversed, and even chat with them as they asked me questions.

When I mentioned how many missions then-SFC McG and I had flown in Iraq, they told me I probably ought to have earned wings for my efforts. The co-pilot even said, "Wow, Sir. It sounds as though you've got more air time than I do."

"Not that that should make you nervous or anything."


Blessings and peace to one and all,

Fr. Tim, SJ

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