Sunday, February 25, 2018

Back Home After Long Dark Tour Of Wichita Falls Sheppard Air Force Base

Yesterday, an hour before noon, Spencer Jack's grandpa, my little brother Jake, picked me up at Miss Daisy's in order to eventually deposit me at the airport.

Prior to arriving at the departure part of the airport my little brother took me to his neighborhood casino where we had ourselves a mighty fine lunch of sweet and sour and teriyaki chicken in a big bowl of chow mien noodles.

After noodling, my airport chauffeur drove out into the desert where I picked some cotton and saw a big eagle nesting in a big tree.

Eventually the tour took us back to where we had been the day before, that being the north side of Camelback Mountain. The day before we were denied entry to the full parking lot where hikers park before attempting to climb to the summit of Camelback Mountain. But yesterday we drove right in and found a parking spot where we took a driving respite during which I enjoyed the scenery, including the cactus in obscene gesture mode you see above.

I do not believe I have ever seen hiking trails with as many hikers as I saw the two days I was up close to Camelback Mountain. Upon my next return to Arizona Spencer Jack's grandpa and I are going to attempt reaching the Camelback summit. Or give it our best effort.

One of the signs at the trailhead had an ominous Heat Warning. Heat was not an issue yesterday, or the day before, or today. The temperature was barely above freezing for my last Arizona swim.

Soon after leaving Camelback Mountain we arrived at my departure point. I sadly said goodbye to Spencer Jack's grandpa and soon found myself flying east towards Texas.

The flight seemed to go fast. Until we landed. Eventually all aboard were allowed off the plane. I then easily made my way via the DFW Skytrain to the B terminal were I found the tiny plane with takes me back to Wichita Falls.

The landing in Wichita Falls turned a bit bizarre. We landed and then began rolling along, on and on and on. The previous time I landed in Wichita Falls it took about five minutes between touchdown and being at the exit gate.

Last night after about 10 minutes of rolling along I decided to call my mom, figuring we must be about at the gate. I talked to mom a couple minutes. Finished the mom call and soon found myself perplexed at the continuing long plane taxi ride, along with my fellow flyers, including many who were Air Force types familiar with the Sheppard Air Force Base landing zone we were touring.

One joked the pilot must be looking for the McDonald's drive through. This seemed funny at the time.

At one point the pilot hit something which felt like how it feels when you run your vehicle into a curb.

At another point the pilot hit the brakes and then began a spin the plane around maneuver which had all aboard looking at each other, laughing and shaking our heads in wonderment.

After the spin around the dark tour of Sheppard Air Force Base continued. I made a couple more calls.

And then, in the distance, we saw what looked like the Wichita Falls Airport building. The pilot was then following blue lights lining the way, marking a route called C.

When it became obvious the pilot had finally found our end point those onboard let out a muted cheer.

And then the cheering was followed with a slight problem getting lined up with the moving walkway thing upon which one eventually escapes.

As we all exited the plane the pilot stayed inside his cabin, so there was no opportunity to thank him for the long dark tour of Sheppard Air Force Base...

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