Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Space A

My brother Mikel's daughter, Asher turned 4 on January 26th and I thought it would be great for the girls and I to go celebrate with her!

The military has what's called, "Space A" flights (Space Available) for active duty and retired military members to hop onto aircraft for free...the catch is, you have to be "available" when they are ready to go and they may be ready to go RIGHTNOW or daaaaaaayyyyyyysssss from when you're ready to go...but again...it's FREE.

So, we got our paperwork ready and registered with the air terminal in Rota to fly to Dover, Air Force Base - the closest we could get to Washington, DC where my sister Kay and Asher live...and were told that a flight was leaving the next day...so we packed up and went to the terminal...

Johann met us there to say goodbye....we waited about 3 hours, had breakfast, checked our baggage, and were whisked off to the terminal. Just as we'd gone through the X-Ray security check, a flight attendant came to get us to say that the flight had been canceled and MAY fly tomorrow, but to keep calling to check.

Um...ok. So, we went home, a little disappointed and a little tired, but, hey, we got to spend 1 more day with Johann who was fresh off a trip from Naples, Italy; so it worked out.

I called every 2 hours to see if the aircraft was ready to go and they said, they'd fly at 3am...then they said 6am...then they said to call back at 10:30am and when I called at 10:30, they said, Yes, the aircraft was ready to fly and they were leaving at 10:45am...WHAT????!!!

So, the girls and I RAN outta the house and FLEW to the base terminal - hence the disheveled look in our pictures...

We checked BACK in and were told we'd be the only passengers on a c-5 aircraft and we'd be flying in about an hour...

So, the girls and I grabbed some lunch at the terminal...I called Johann at work and told him we'd be leaving shortly, he RAN over to say goodbye (again), and the girls hung out in the play area at the airport until it was time to leave.

I was preparing myself for another disappointment, when we crossed into the X-Ray security check...but nope...we went through and out to the bus which took us to the Giant aircraft!

So, several things were "interesting" about our flight...number 1...we really were the only passengers on the plane...it wasn't like a commercial aircraft, the majority of the plane was taken up with storage below and the passenger seats were up on the 2nd story where there were about 60 seats or so...

R&R were thrilled that we had the entire plane to ourselves and stretched out with all their stuff accordingly.

The 2nd strange thing was that the seats were backward...as in, facing the back of the aircraft...which probably would have been even more strange if one could see the world flying by backward but there were:

Strange thing Number 3: No windows.

One of the Air Force guys came and chatted with me about safety procedures, demonstrating the use of some crazy looking "life saving paraphernalia" (my term) and freaking Reese out with his demonstration of what to do should we "go down"...and I had to reassure her that that was only in the event of an "Emergency" and we likely, wouldn't have to use any of it. LoL...

And then we flew for 8 uneventful hours across the Atlantic to Dover, Delaware, where Kay, my mom and Asher picked us up and drove us back to DC!

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