My Spousal Flight #3

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My Spousal Flight #2

At the moment I'm not seeing a lot of the man of my dreams, the man I married (Todd if you're not familiar with my story) as he's been working extremely long hours(upwards of 100 hours per week)!! But every now and then I get to see a few perks of him being with the 1st Helicopter Squadron and one of those perks is that twice a year they have spousal flights.

This time they decided to have two night flights on a Friday night and two day flights during on the following day. I asked if I could go on one of each, if it wasn't a problem. Luckily enough the wonderful people there said it would be fine! I can't tell you how 'neat' it was (for lack of a better word). Not only do I adore flying, but I got to see what my husband gets to do on a regular basis and gave me an insight into what his job includes. Boy, what a bummer having to look at those sights everyday!! The worst part would be the helmet hair for sure - if you don't count the long hours away from your family for days on end!!

The Friday night flight was amazing. Just flying above all of the traffic, seeing the sights of Washington DC all lit up was absolutely awe-inspiring. I tried to take some photos but with the darkness and the continual bumping of the helicopter, all I got was some pretty amazing artistic shots - I didn't even bother scanning those babies in - maybe I will at a later date. It was a brilliant time though, thanks TSgt Ivo Tanaciev (FE) and Maj Impicini for the tour and the great flying.

On Saturday I got to do the day trip and managed to take some photos that I love. What a difference seeing it by day. You don't realise how close you are to the ground until you see it by daylight. We flew so close to one of the bridges that I felt like I could reach down and touch the people in the cars below us. I put in the photo of that just so you can get an idea of how low we were. Evidently that's rather necessary so that we didn't collide with the incoming flights into Regan International Airport.

I got to see the White House this time. Last time I was very new to the area and honestly didn't even know where to look for it. I knew it was in the general area, but to tell you the truth. I was rather surprised at how small it was compared to the surrounding monuments etc. But still, I got a few shots of it and will include them in here.

I would like to thank MSgt JR Inoa (FE) and Capt Morales for their wonderful day tour!
Lastly I would like to send out a heartfelt thank you to my darling husband, without whom this would not have been possible. Not only the flight over DC, which is a very difficult thing to do since September 11th, but for his undying love and affection ... oh, and for babysitting the kids so that I could do both of these flights! I love you Todd!!

Here we are flying towards the Washington Memorial! One of the monuments I was able to see and recognise from a distance.

I love this shot because it gives you an idea of what flying in formation looks like. You can also see the lovely trees and greenery of the Washington DC area.

If you look hard you can see the Washington Memorial there on the left hand side, and on the right hand side you can see the roof of the House of Congress. Also - if you're really good, you can see the roof of the Jefferson Memorial in the middle of the picture as well. I didn't even know it was there until somebody pointed it out to me later on!

This photo doesn't have any of the usual monuments in them, but it's one of my favourite photos from this spousal flight. I just love the roads beneath us, the two Hueys in front of us and the feeling this photo gives me each time I see it.

Can you tell that we're banking a little to the left in order to follow the road and then the bridge to get to the Potomac River and return back to Andrews AFB. The Pentagon is right there - obviously. In the background is the Washington Memorial and the Jefferson Memorial.

Before we left Andrews AFB I managed to pick up the courage to ask someone where I would look to see the White House, as I had missed seeing it on the previous spousal flight. I was determined to find it on this flight - and when I did I was rather surprised as to how 'small' it was. For some unknown reason I expected it to be a LOT larger ... probably because in all of the movies and programmes I'd seen on TV it just seemed to be larger than life. It was still impressive though - and with the colours of fall around it, I was just happy to find it amongst all of the other buildings.

This is the White House from the Domain ... can you see it? No wonder I didn't see it the first time I got to fly on a spousal flight - it really is well hidden amongst the trees and isn't a massive building like some of the ones surrounding it.

And there is a closer shot of it with the front lawn. At this point they were erecting the new security fences around the monuments because of the increased terror alert. You can see those quite clearly as well.

Crossing over the 14th Street Bridge. Can you see how 'close' we are to it? The pilot has to get down to 120 ft so as to avoid the incoming /outgoing planes at the airport. It definitely makes for fun flying and great views. I've also been on the ground when these Hueys have flown past and the sound of them really makes you turn your head and watch them as they go by!

A Huey with the House of Congress roof in the background - I just liked this photo!

Another one of my favourites from that day! I love the shot of the Potomac River, the Washington Memorial and the Huey all in the same shot! Thanks to the 1st Heli for letting me part of this wonderful adventure!

Next Spousal Flight ...
Thanks to Moonglade Designs for the wonderful graphics!!