Wild, Blue, Yonder


They came… they flew… they’re gone!

I wish they would bring back the local airshow! I’ve missed it since it quit coming. I don’t know where it’s been or why it is taking so long to return. Like all the other fans around here, nothing could make me happier.

I remember the last time I went like it was yesterday:

I didn’t have an inkling there was an airshow until I saw the flashing sign on the highway, “AIRSHOW.” We whizzed by it, but I was sure it said airshow. I rushed to the computer when I got home to Google “airshow”. Yep, there it was in black and white, or electronic letters – whatever.

I have my own little set of rules on how to go to an airshow. Unfortunately, I forgot about them in my excitement and didn’t obey my own rules too well.

Rule One is get your tickets early and save five bucks per ticket. Problem was, I couldn’t figure out where to get them, some bank I’d never heard of. Once again, I was saved by the Internet and found it was in a grocery store. But I got there late and had to stand in line for 30 minutes. Fifty thousand people going to an airshow and one person selling tickets. No wonder people pay extra and get tickets at the gate.

Rule Two is go early to stake your claim on a good spot up front. We overslept. I didn’t have anything ready. I had to dig through the garage to find lawn chairs and then dust off spider webs.

Rule Three is take your own food because they charge $3 for a bottle of water. I didn’t have anything to take, so I just grabbed up what I could find, water, apples, and diet soda. It wasn’t enough for an entire day.

When we arrived we had to wait in another long line to park. They didn’t seem as organized as they used to be. I guess it had been a long time for them too. By the time we got in and dragged our chairs a mile across the parking lot, all hope of a spot anywhere close to the front line was gone.

I noticed that we were hopelessly out of fashion with our heavy folding lawn chairs. Everyone else had the collapsible kind with its own portable tote bag. Two out of our four were broken, so we had to be careful how we sat on them. Lawn chair upgrades were sorely needed.

Rule Four is to take sunscreen and sunhats. I did remember that, thank goodness! I couldn’t find my airshow hat with the small brim and had to wear my fishing hat, but it was a hat. I used sunscreen, but I forgot about my feet. Who would expect feet to get sunburned?

The flying was just as fabulous as in all other years as the show unfolded against a clear blue sky. There were loops, spirals, Cuban eights, near passes, bombs, synchronized acrobatics and other thrilling demonstrations of man’s artful mastery of the air.

I wonder what it is about an airshow that captures the imagination and holds thousands spellbound as they watch the various aerial feats. Probably something as basic as man’s discovery of the airplane itself, the dream of escaping our earthbound existence and flying like the birds. It has to be something inexplicable to get people to sit in the hot sun for five hours looking up.

But it was a first-rate show, in spite of my sunburned feet. I was already thinking about next time. I saw those portable lawn chairs on sale! And my grandson, who attended for the first time, wanted to add his idea, “Next time, let’s get an umbrella.” Sounded like a good idea to me.

And, if it isn’t too much trouble, let me know about it a bit sooner next time!

Copyright 2005-2018 Sheila Moss

About Sheila Moss

My stories are about daily life and the funny things that happen to all of us. My columns have been published in numerous newspapers, magazines, anthologies, and websites.
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7 Responses to Wild, Blue, Yonder

  1. We inadvertently caught an airshow once. The Blue Angels we’re performing before a race and we happened to be driving by on this long stretch of two-lane highway near the racetrack. Traffic was heavy when all of a sudden we heard this loud “Swoosh!” overhead. Then we saw the jets start climbing upwards off to the left—spectacular sight. Anyway, all the traffic began to really slow down and when we came to this turnout we decided to just pull over and get out and watch the pilots perform—as did quite a few others. What a show! But, the greatest moment to us came when the show was about to end and the pilots all dipped their wings to one side as if to say goodbye to everyone. Then they veered off towards the east until they slipped out of sight. We’ll never forget it, just a fantastic performance by real professionals. 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  2. geezer94 says:

    Great post. Sounds a lot like my last air show one summer in SC. I dressed for it and wasn’t the one that got sunburned. Thanks for my evenint smile. g

    Liked by 1 person

  3. energywriter says:

    Love your story. It has been WAY too long since I’ve been to an airshow. Need to watch for one this summer. You forgot two things on your list: ear plugs and sun glasses. BTW: don’t take an umbrella. They block other people’s view.

    Liked by 1 person

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