This is incredible - spotting just off the runway surface

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Stumbled upon this on YouTube - in case you haven't seen, I strongly suggest you give this a good watch:


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In 1980 I was with two girlfriends and their male doctor friend, we were all aviation enthusiasts, I met them when my cousin Mary introduced me to the two sisters' mother, I was visiting my older cousin in Waterbury CT after they had visited my Mom, my Dad and I in California, my cousins the Cipriano's invited me for a stay.  I stayed with them for about two weeks but as I said, i also made friends with the neighbor next door, she was a middle age lady, disabled, but she loved to talk about history, aviation, and the things I loved to talk about, she was like a fairy Godmother, like me she was also part Lithuanian and she pegged me like Sean Connery in the movie I helped with, The Hunt For Red October, because I am about remembering history as a passion for peace in our world.

On the last night before I had to fly home from CT back home to California, my girlfriends took me on a whirlwind day trip, I stayed at their home the night before (nothing happened, they were perfect women and they both had boyfriends that would have roughed me up, lol), then we went to Groton CT and Mystic seaport where they paid for a twenty minute flight in a six place Cherokee, just to sight see along the CT Coast and Mystic Seaport.

So that night, in exchange for the flight they gave me, I went to Bradley Intl Airport, and I helped them with some work they were doing to restore the New England Air Museum, which had been badly damaged by the 1979 Windsor Locks Tornado, very rare on the east coast.  While there, like your video, we walked just to about twenty feet short of the runway and I remember seeing a Pan Am 747 take off right over my head, the loud roar.  The only other large aircraft I had been close to, but less so taking off was a C5a once in Fairfield CA at Travis. It was so amazing.  As we walked back to the museum, which opened to the airport taxiways and runways on the far side of the field, well away from the terminal, we saw two A10's taxi by us, quite loud in the fading light.  Then the airport patrol came up in a jeep and gave us a look over and we pointed to the museum, so they passed right on by us, as it is a federal offense for a civilian to be on the tarmac at any controlled field, unless with a pilot or other authorized person, which we were.

So thanks for the memories, those two Lithuanian women were so kind, the younger woman's casual boyfriend was a doctor and he saw that I had a growing sore throat and cough that night.  So he made me drink Sherry, which I have never had since, it made me quite tipsy, and he gave me a strong antibiotic liquid to swallow with instructions to take it full course.  He knew I was flying home the next day and said I needed the healing or else my ears would be raging with pain during the flight.  His visit was for free, there we were, the four of us, just hanging out, two women aviation enthusiasts and a doctor, who had the personality of a young Bones McCoy from Star Trek.  His healing helped me mend, and the next day I flew ocean to ocean, as United called it, right after drinking a beer in JFK's Manhattan viewing airport terminal, watching the golden sun as it hovered above Manhattan.   We took off just as the sun went under the horizon, and I had the most beautiful, relaxing flight of my entire life, with scattered T-Storms to look at in the distance, and my last sentence and memory you helped raise in me today, I loved the way the lightning would light up one cloud, then all the other clouds, in sequence, would light up, as if the angels within them were communicating to each other.  My maternal grandmother took away my fear of lightning and thunder by just saying it was the angels bowling, then she would pretend to be a bowling sportscaster and she would grade each lightning flash and thunder that followed.

It is so funny, how one video can raise 40 year old memories, but that is why I appreciate members like you and these forums, for as I grow older, sometimes my memory needs a nudge to remember these things....


Below are links to the museum I mentioned and a bit on the Tornado that brought me to help there,_Connecticut,_tornado

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That Just Planes video was absolutely bloody amazing! Caution. Wake turbulence.. :tongue: Not quite as extreme as the (fictional) wake turbulence which Billy Bob Thornton took a ride on at the end of Pushing Tin, but still all the more impressive for this being real. I could almost smell the kerosene and feel the heat.

John - you're a fortunate man having had all these good adventures.. so far. Thanks for sharing.

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