Because we've been studying airplanes for school, I looked up airplane-related things we might do while we were visiting my brother in California. To our great delight, it turned out there was an airshow at the naval air base a couple hours away! And Philip loves planes too, so there was no question we would go.
It was a huge event—we waited in a huge line of cars for an hour just to drive onto the Base and park. And once we were there, we could see why it was so popular, because it was amazing! There was something going on in the air every half hour or so: big military planes flying over; twirling, looping stunt planes; flying teams of jets. And then there were a whole bunch of cool planes on the ground, too. Our favorite was the huge C5 Hercules we got to walk through, and several of the fighter jets.
It was hot (and bright!), of course, but we had our trusty fans, which helped. The girls were wearing the little skirts and shirts that my mom helped Daisy sew in 4-H this summer.
Big landing gear!
The last group in the air show was the Blue Angels. I seem to remember seeing them fly once when I was little, but it's been years. They are the flying team for the Navy—NOT a "stunt team," they kept emphasizing, for some reason (so we wouldn't worry about their safety, maybe?). Anyway, as I kept saying to everyone afterwards, we would have been totally happy with all the air demonstrations and the ground display even without the Blue Angels, but with them it became the best show ever. I'm no expert on airplanes; I don't even LIKE them that much (or at least I didn't, before studying them these last few weeks), but even I could see that these guys were something special. And I found out that I really like taking pictures of jets zooming through blue skies. :)
The maneuvers these planes do are amazing. They are F/A-18's, but you would think they were birds, the way they swoop and dive and move together as one. I thought I would be nervous, seeing how close together they fly (18 inches between the wingtip of one and the canopy of the next, they said), but they just do it so competently that it's not really scary.
It does make you gasp, though. Look how CLOSE these two flew, crossing each other. HOW do they do that??!
Goldie was amazed.
I love the LOUD sound of the engines as the jets fly by, and I especially like it when they turn on their smoke trails. So striking.
Glinting in the sun
This was one of my favorite things: you could see the jets casting huge shadows on the smoke as they zoomed up past the sun.
There were several rousing games of "Duck, duck, goose."
Some of them degenerated into games of "Goose, goose, goose, goose, goose!"
Our children absolutely ADORE Philip and Allison. Always have. I don't blame them.
Philip and—Adam, I think this is. I love the way the sun looked on the twins' red hair.
The C5 looked so pretty in the sunset light! :)
When everyone had finally gone, and the military police were starting to drive around and close everything up, we got in our cars and drove down the coast as the sun set. There is nothing I like more than a sunset over the ocean. The light was so beautiful!
Then, on the other side of the sky, the full moon came up, equally beautiful. Love that pink-purple gradient over the water!
And to top it all off, it was the night of a total lunar eclipse, so we got to enjoy the blood moon from the backyard later that night. What a day full of wonders in the sky! :)