Saturday, August 20, 2011

Scary Airplanes

Someone gave us passes to the local air show/boat races not long ago, so we attended one of the days.  We were able to find a place to sit in the shade to watch the air show.  I was glad of that.  I'd never been to an airshow before--being stuck in the unrelenting sun to watch shiny metal always seemed unappealing to me.  It was fun to watch the planes do their stunts and really exciting when the helicopters flew so close to us.

The kids waved to the pilots, who waved back.  (Since then, T still waves to every airplane that flies by.)  The action of the airshow slowed down, the kids were getting restless and hungry, time to get some lunch.  While the kids and I ate (B was still getting his food), I half listened to the garbled announcement over the loudspeakers saying something about time to get your ear protection on.  I thought that meant the boat races were about to start and since we had no ear protection, there was little I could do.

Suddenly, an F15 Air Force fighter jet blasted right over us.  It came so fast.  All you had time to do was take in the powerful sight, and it was gone.  Then the sound hit.  A deafening, roaring scream that made your ribs vibrate.  Poor T, the jet came from behind him and the sound knocked him over.  Literally, I looked down at him and he was lying face down, crying, hot dog and bun strewn across the blanket.  He was terrified and cried and cried.  He spent the rest of the time curled in my lap, trying to burrow away from the sound.  Afterward, all he could talk about was the scary black airplane that "scratched the sky and hurt my back".

I tried to take a couple pictures while holding him and covering his ears, but the plane flew so fast, it was difficult not to get picture like this:

I managed to one-handedly get a couple pictures of the jet, but as it moved so fast I couldn't zoom in, and it ended up looking rather small and blurry.  And the times it flew really close, there was no way for my slow shutter release camera to catch it.

But I think the following is my favorite picture.  I took a picture but realized I hadn't even come close to getting the plane in the shot.  So I started to put the camera down and this is how the picture came out:

I like how you can tell that an F 15 is a riveting sight.  During all the other airplane acts, people kept milling around even as the planes flew close by.  I also didn't realize how many people had their hands over their ears.

After the air show as over and T had recovered a bit (K didn't seem bothered much.  Sitting in Daddy's lap kept her feeling safe.), I took the kids to the bounce houses that had been set up in the children's section.  There the kids had a good time jumping non-stop for a good half hour.  When we went back to B, we found him happy as a clam, watching the boat races.

T still talks about the scary airplane.  But I think he's getting over it and he has spent a lot of time with a jet alphabet book we have.  It has an F14 and an F16 in it; since they are so similar to the F15, he can talk about the plane that scratched the sky--on questioning him, I think he's referring to the sound-- and go on to look at lots of other planes.  It may even be that he'll develop an ongoing fascination with planes, the way he loves vacuum cleaners now, though he used to be terrified of them as a baby.

1 comment:

Dana said...

Wow, such excitement! Now I know why that experience stuck with him for days and days. Glad he had a nice lap to nestle in.