And, Anne Murray remains yummy, too
For those who might not know, the Snowbirds are not Anne Murray’s first hit song (the babe still looks fabulous and desirable at age 94, or whatever she is), nor are they lucky Canadians who winter in Arizona, Florida or Hawaii. Well, all of those are snowbirds, but the Snowbirds I refer to are Canada’s crack aeronautic team that always spends the month of April in the Comox Valley, practicing their stunts for the forthcoming season of, well, stunts above awe-stricken crowds across the land and overseas.
For Americans, the Snowbirds are the equivalent of the Blue Angels.
There are those cranky souls who do not like the Snowbirds. They find them noisy (they are) and they don’t relish the fact they fly real low over residential areas, and they are especially miffed by the fact that they suck up massive amounts of fuel in a time when the rest of us are really being ‘hosed’ at the pumps. Some folk tell us we are being hosed due to petroleum shortages. In truth we getting a major shaft in our bank accounts due to hideously greedy petroleum companies (check their profits for the last year) who are in cahoots with assorted governments. That’s my theory, anyway, and I’m sticking to it. But, that’s another matter. Back to the Snowbirds.
Way back in 1999 I had a chance to go up with the Snowbirds. It was something I’d longed to do for years. An advantage of being a newspaper person in a military base town is that certain perks come with the calling, and one of them is spending a fair amount of time going up in airplanes and writing nice stories about them. I’ve been up in many, many airplanes, all the way from reconnaissance craft to jet fighters. It has always been a rush. But, I had never cracked the Snowbirds nut.
One day I got a call from the media liaison guy who told me my time had come. They had a flight for me on April 23rd. Hot damn! Then I mentally backtracked. I couldn’t do it. Damn! April 23rd was to be my wedding day to Wendy. It was all kinda booked. No point in asking if we could defer the nuptials for a day or two. Would not go over well.
So, as it was, I did get to go up in a plane that day. After our reception we flew off to Honolulu. And God, with an omnipresent sense of humor (everything about God is ‘omni’, by the way) deemed that we should also spend our wedding night at Honolulu International.
Due to a mistake in booking – our actual honeymoon was to be on Kauai – there was no late night flight to our favorite island. The first one was at 7 a.m. We got to Honolulu about 1 a.m. too late to book a hotel for a matter of about 4 hours sleep. So, our wedding night was spent lying on hard benches outside the terminal. Well, at least it was nice and warm there, if not conducive to normal wedding night revels. A hard bench plus no Snowbirds.
Some might think those were negative things. Not so. Now, nine years later, I still believe it was still the best honeymoon start a couple could have. Certainly the best one I’d had.
So, as the Snowbirds fly over, it comes to mind my anniversary is on the horizon. Guess it would serve me well to remember that.