Aug 8, 2009

Jets So Close You Can Almost Touch Them

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My grandparents have lived in the same house since the early 1940s, and their close proximity to Detroit's Metro Airport means that they witnessed the facility grow from a one-runway regional airport that mostly serviced the Michigan National Guard into a major international travel hub that serves over 35 million passengers per year.

I took a break for a few minutes minutes the other day while I was chopping some overgrown brush on the back of my grandfather's property to watch the airplanes as they roared overhead the last mile or so to Metro. Pictured on your left is a jet from Southwest Airlines approaching Metro, and it flew perhaps 200 feet over my head, lending itself to me for a few colorful pictures.

As a kid I used to run with my arms straight out and pretend I was piloting one of those jets. heck, maybe I thought I WAS a jet as I raced around the backyard like a hyperactive chimp wired on Benzedrine, punctuating my VROOOOMs with a few WHOOOSHes and BRRRRRRRs. No cares in the world about such adult concerns as home mortgages, downsizing, or public speaking anxiety.

Watching planes land and take off is a timeless, entertaining, and even a meditative activity, and you should park your car near an airport someday if you doubt the therapeutic value in wasting time staring at jets.

5 comments:

alfred said...

I likes big jets. they goes fast!

Molly said...

My dad used to take us to Toledo airport to watch planes come and go. Can't quite imagine my kids' reaction if I suggested that as an afternoon outing.

Randy said...

I thought driving to the airport and watching the planes take off and land was a ritual only in my family. On the morning of the second day of the bar exam, some of us were talking about how we eased down from the stress of the first day. One of us volunteered that he had driven out by a runway and "just watched them--come in, leave, come in, leave." About three other people spoke up and said how much they liked doing that, too.

I suspect that is a bygone pastime, what with security concerns.

Mad Jack said...

I live close to the old Wagon Wheel air field, near Sylvania, so we get to see the single engine planes all the time. Kids like it, and the planes look very peaceful up there.

Your remarks reminded me of my neighbors, who are very proud of their son. Whenever a plane flies by overhead he gets all excited, pointing at the sky and yelling, "Plane! Plane!". I'd think he'd be over that behavior by now; he's about 27.

Patrick said...

I agree this could be a sort of meditative activity. Plane is something .. bigger then us and is moves so.. majestically..