Monday, December 25, 2017

A Merry Christmas to You!

A white Christmas morning!

I've got some white privilege to shovel.

Pray for our troops who are forward deployed please.
I've got a nephew in Guam. Carry on Andrew, and thanks.

I remember being away for a few Christmases.
There was the time I found out I was going to be deployed to Iran for 6 months.
I decided to fly home for Christmas before going to that hellhole.
I flew home space available, waiting in Frankfurt at Rhein-Main Air Base for over a day (many had been waiting over 48 hours!) until they scheduled a cargo plane just to clear the terminal of all of us waiting.

When I flew back to West Germany with a pre-purchased ticket, I was a little later getting to the airport than I wanted to be due to waiting on family who wanted to see me off.
Dad dropped me at the door of the airport (no TSA!) while he parked.
I entered the terminal to hear last call for my flight announced.
I ran like O.J. Simpson through the terminal, in wool uniform with a coat on, carrying my duffel bag. I don't know why I didn't use my B-4 bag, which I still use to this day.

I arrived at the gate just as they close the door on the plane.
The stewardesses looked at me, smiled and opened the door to let me in.
I went through First Class to find a seat in economy and to my horror, as we were taxying away, I saw that all the seats were taken!
In panic I asked the stewardess whether this was the correct flight.
She asked for my ticket (no one else had yet!) and pointed out that I had been bumped to First Class. Oh Yeah :)
And then I saw that the flight had been changed to an earlier time and I hadn't noticed.
Dad, my brothers and nieces and nephews wondered what had happened to me.

That wasn't the first time my dad was upset with me concerning picking me up or taking me to the airport.
I once flew home from South Carolina for Christmas on short notice and could only book a flight to Toledo, not Detroit.
Dad was to drive there to pick me up.
Except the heavy snowstorm that closed Toledo diverted our plane to Detroit!
Dad drove for hours through a blizzard to the Toledo airport only to find I was in Detroit.
Dad was a highly intelligent guy, but it still took him a couple days to calm down and understand that I couldn't book to Detroit in the first place.
My sister picked me up. 10 minute drive from her house to Detroit Metro. :)

I spent one Christmas in a hotel in Nurberg one year. What a pretty town that was. That's the one where the Nurburgring race track is (drove that!).

My team was working on a mountaintop nearby.
We bought roller skates in town and built skateboards out of crate boards.
Skateboarded down that hill into town. The locals were amazed. I don't think they had ever seen a skateboard.
I took a turn too fast and slammed into the side of a parked bus. Fun times.

Spent one Christmas Eve with friends in Il Duomo in Florence at Midnight Mass in an attempt to get warm. The Oil Embargo caused a lot of hotels to turn off the heat.

I was deployed to a lot of nice places, but those places were far from home and family.
For all the happy memories, I remember the feeling of wanting to be with family and loved ones.

May God comfort our troops and protect them from our enemies and from depression and loneliness and return them safely to their families and loved ones.

Merry Christmas!


  1. Merry Christmas to you and your family, and Merry Christmas to all of the patriots here.

  2. Is that photo at the top your place, Ed? As in the area you will have to shovel out on White Christmas 2017?

    Merry Christmas, anyway. It is the celebration of the birth of our Savior and King.

    1. Yes Ma'am.
      Looking out the front door.
      One more coffee and out I go.
      Merry Christmas to you, Mr. AOW and your new feline.

  3. ED, Neat Flight Experience ! I've had a few. If I'm remembering correctly, I missed a connecting from Newark to Phoenix through Detroit than crashed in Detroit....
    If I never fly again it will be too soon, and I'm not talking about fear of flying.

    Prayers for those deployed and those wishing for their loved ones to come through the front door vs answering the doorbell being rung by people in uniform.

    1. Flight 255? Wow. One survivor, a little girl. Crashed about ten miles down the road from me.

  4. No, either a different flight/crash or I'm mis-remembering.

    I thought a flight from Newark to Phoenix through Detroit had crashed. And it would have been 1989 or very early 1990.

    1. Wiki:
      The flight crew began August 16, 1987, by operating the incident aircraft as Northwest Flight 750 from Minneapolis-Saint Paul International Airport, flying to MBS International Airport in Saginaw, Michigan. Departing Saginaw, the flight crew operated the same aircraft as Flight 255, flying to John Wayne Airport in Santa Ana, California, with intermediate stops at Detroit Metropolitan Wayne County Airport in Romulus, Michigan (outside of Detroit, Michigan), and Sky Harbor International Airport in Phoenix, Arizona. Other than a minor problem taxiing to the arrival gate, the flight from Saginaw to Detroit was uneventful.[1]:2

  5. Thanks Ed, I saw that Wiki as well. I was traveling for a job that I didn't start until 1989, so it couldn't have been this one.

    Imagine - the crash as a result of forgetting to extend the flaps...

  6. Wonderful story... and white priviledge indeed... :)

  7. Sorry I'm late to this lovely post and snow picture!
    I'm glad you're safe and sound with Scherie and so aware of all that has made you appreciate everything even more.
    God bless our troops!

  8. Great pics, and hope you had a merry one, and best wishes for a Happy New Year!