Sunday, March 18, 2018

Mo' Jets and Sunsets

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Sarge is otherwise occupied so I figured I'd put something together for you all.  The Blue Angels opened their 2018 season last weekend with a "home" show in El Centro California.  Pensacola is their regular home, but in the winter, they act like snowbirds, coming down south to warmer climes.  Ok, they actually come out west, but you get the point.   Speaking of snowbirds, I had a business trip to Destin Florida back in January and almost didn't get into the hotel there I like due to all the retirees visiting for the winter.  I thought that staying in a hotel for a few months would be prohibitively expensive, until I chatted up one of the hotel clerks.  The long term rate at the hotel is about $70 a night, which includes breakfast and a few nights of well stocked happy hours.  Two large is not a cheap month for housing, but it's not all that unreasonable.  What was unreasonable was the line of seniors forming up 30 minutes before happy hour making it a challenge to get my share!

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Speaking of snowbirds, Phoenix is the Blues' next stop, where they are this weekend.  The Phoenix area is pretty popular for both seniors migrating south, and for elderly folks as a retirement destination.  My aunt snarkly calls Arizona "God's waiting room."


Hat tip to AWC Dan Peabody for that video.  Dan used to work for me when we were both younger.  Now retired, he lives in Litchfield Park AZ, which is where Luke AFB is.  That affords him some great shots of their show right from his back yard.

While not near Phoenix, my better half will be joining me on a trip to Arizona next weekend for a visit to the Grand Canyon.  I'm almost embarrassed that we have never visited being that it's just the next state over, but at least we're finally getting that National Park crossed off my bucket list.  Bryce Canyon and Arches are probably the next to fall.

Chris "Woody" Buhlman

Just after we leave for the Grand Canyon State, the teenangster will be making her way to the airport for her trip back to college.  We picked her up Friday night, and apparently everyone else was flying into San Diego at the same time.  I've never seen Lindbergh Field*, or at least the approaches to the terminals so busy.   Timing was perfect though as her bag arrived just as we did.

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She's home for Spring Break right now which is nice.  She's doing what teenagers do- sleep mostly, although we plan to see a movie or two, have dinner with the whole family, walk the beasts, etc.


Seeing how sparsely I post here, I doubt I mentioned them to anyone here, our Corgi sisters.  We got the one in the background last May or so as a pet for my daughter.   She takes "Miss Bea" or Beatrice back and forth to Savannah and even has her in the dorm.  The one up front is Cici, which was a reluctant acquisition.  "C" went to another home, but was returned a few months later when the new owner who already had a Corgi moved to a new apartment.  The landlord said she couldn't have two pets so back on the shelf she went.  The mom and aunt, both of which were mated with her dad "Jet" continuously attacked her though, usually after playing with dad, who doted on her.  She was the runt of the litter, and being small and outnumbered, was having a hard time- hiding under beds, behind couches, etc. to avoid the others.  As we later found out, that's typical behavior in a pack.  They can't have a related and un-spade female in the house with her father, so they drive her out.  We took her in to help re-home her, but she became the house guest that wouldn't leave.  Mainly because my wife had grown too attached.  So what I thought would be a pet-free house for many many years after our Jack Russell died in 2016, now has two, B and C.   Most Corgis are too short and stocky to be very physical, but these two are "flyers" as  my wife calls them, able to jump up onto the couch and our fairly hi-rise bed.

Speaking of flying...

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I used to travel quite a bit for work.  There were fairly regular trips to Norfolk, Panama City, the Washington Navy Yard, Japan and Bahrain. For one glorious year I was busy enough to hit Platinum status on United, and all the perks that came with it.  I sleep horribly on planes, probably something to do with my previous occupation, but up in the front of the plane, the part with the lay flat seats, where nobody beats you up, I'm Rip Van Winkle.  


I've come in for a landing for the most part, flying domestic only a few times a year if I'm lucky, residing in "cubicle hell" as Lex so aptly described it.


Although, I'm doing that in this fine city, "America's Finest City " if you are wont to believe in the chamber of commerce slogans.

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I can't believe it's been 20 years since these birds left San Diego, when Fightertown USA at Miramar, letting the Marines move in.  Now, being on an Airwing Staff sucks since you have to live in Hanford California.  Sorry Lush.

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I've probably used this one before, but it's one of my favorite sunset pictures.  I like it a lot, even if it's not even a sunset  picture of San Diego but a sunrise.

Now's the time when I want to thank our esteemed host for having us all here.  Let's all give a big hand to Old Air Force Sarge, our phormer Phantom phixer.  (Insert patronizing F-4 photo here).

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Another gratuitous shot of my hometown.

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I have a similar shot of me and my wife on this bridge, but at night.  This is the Sydney Harbor Bridge which will happily take your $150 to let you climb it.


This one reminds me of bird feathers.

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One for Juvat.


One for Lush.


And two on final for Sarge.

Anyway, enough for today.  If you're watching basketball, I hope your bracket is somewhat intact.  I'm rooting for Villanova.  



*Now called San Diego International due to Lindy's anti-Semitism.

18 comments:

  1. Many years ago, late 70's, my wife who was my girlfriend at the time, and I went to Destin for the weekend. That Sunday morning about 8:00 A.M. we were walking on the beach when from behind us, one then a second beautiful blue airplane flew by a couple hundred off the deck. Trish said "they're loud", I just had to say "it's the sound of freedom, Honey". Still like to believe that forty years later. Thanks for the beautiful pictures, especially in flight.

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  2. A fine post Tuna, lotsa stunning photos also....thanks.

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    1. Thanks! Love stunning photography so it's easy to share them here.

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  3. My wife and I visited the south rim of the Grand Canyon a few years ago and watching a thunderstorm move along the canyon was a highlight of the stay.
    We started down Bright Angel trail but chickened out not very far into it. The downhill part was easy, but if we went to far downhill, then the hiking back uphill part would be very tough.
    We did the Rim Trail from the village area to Hermit's Rest and then rode the Nation Parks Service shuttle back to the village.
    Weather halted our hike because there are parts of the hike where you might be the tallest thing in the area and when we heard thunder and saw flashes of lighting we flagged down the NPS shuttle.
    We figured it is better to try again the next day than be a statistic.

    We also watched the sunsets, and got a few great photos.

    Thanks for waking up some dormant memories.

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    1. You ever notice that these canyon trails always start out with the downhill portion? I think there's an entrepreneur somewhere at the bottom selling rides back up to the top. Hmmm, may be some money to be made there.....

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    2. Yep.
      On the same trip we hiked Yosemite's Mist Trail from the trailhead up to Vernal Falls and back to the trailhead.
      The hike was seven miles, but the elevation gain was 1,900 feet and at points we were moving rather slowly. But since it was all uphill we could have turned back at any point. A bit embarrassing to get passed on the trail by small children. A great all day hike for we older folks.

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    3. Hope to make some of our own next week.

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    4. Juvat, my apologies. I think that's an F-15E. Not what I was searching for though. Damn that Google!

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  4. Excellent post Tuna. You always find the best photos.

    The Corgis are gorgeous! Glad you made room for them. The Queen would be most pleased. (Queen Elizabeth II you know is a big Corgi fan.)

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    1. Thanks. We heard that the queen is not getting any more. She knows that she won't outlive any new pups.

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  5. MB hasn’t been to Grand Canyon, yet.
    I see a road trip on the horizon.

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  6. Thanks for showing us the pictures with the aircraft and beautiful skies. A real treat on a gray Oregon day.

    Thanks for the post.
    Paul L. Quandt

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    1. I love going back to visit family in Oregon, but definitely need the sun on a regular basis.

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    1. Yeah, pretty much the most vicious looking fighter ever.

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  8. Thirty years ago when we lived in McAllen, TX, there were lots of snowbirds. I was just an impatient youngster at the time going into a McDonald's on a thirty-minute lunch to find a line of old people looking at the menu trying to decide on what to eat. OMG! Get a Big Mac! Now I am the oldie and I totally understand the need to look and decide and be difficult.

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