Sunday, 21 June 2009

Airforce Days

In the Netherlands all armed forces have their own respective day(s) where they show Joe Public what it is they do and what material they use for that. A few weeks ago it was the Army's turn, during the past two days it was the Airforce (the Navy's will be in July, but I doubt whether I will be there though). In stark contrast to the Army, the Airforce is a lot more visual and oratory. For one, most of their equipment is in the air and those air 'machines' can make an awful lot of noise. Deafening on occasion!

Of course not all of the flying machines shown in these photos are used in the Dutch Airforce. On every air-show you try to get foreign squadrons to do a show as well. I'm not sure which ones were flying during the past two days, but I heard colleagues talk of the French, so they were probably there. On the first photo you can see a stealth bomber. Not in use anymore, but restored and now only flying during shows. The second photo shows several helicopters and the one on the left is carrying a jeep. I wouldn't want to be in it, for fear of throwing up!

On the second photo you can also see a few buses and coaches. Because I wasn't there privately, but on a job. I had to ferry visitors back and forth between airbase and train/bus station. During my breaks I was at the 'spotters' area and was able to take a lot of photos. On day two I had the short trip: only 30 minutes back and forth. I was really lucky, because a lot of drivers got stuck in severe traffic. A trip that would normally only last 35 minutes took up to two and a half hours!! Those poor passengers! I'm not sure what the airplane in the third photo is, but I heard talk of a Dakota, so if anyone is more knowledgable than me on this subject...

One of the foreign squads doing their tricks. It was good fun to watch and we were lucky with the weather, although I wouldn't have minded it to be a bit warmer! On day two especially the clouds kept on coming in and occasionally even obscuring part of the shows!

From the spotters place where we were based during our breaks and waiting to relieve other drivers, we had a bad view of the base itself. But when I got home and put this photo on my computer, I found it was actually a US plane! Thank you camera...

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