Sunday, January 11, 2009

Believe me, it's worse in real life

First, the layout: The base here is split in half by an active runway. We're on the East side of the runway, along with the hospital, theater, an elementary school and a gas station. Everything else is on the other side of the base, on the other side of the flightline: the grocery store, post office, library, bank, the girls' schools, all my meetings. To get to any of them, I have to cross the flightline.
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There are planes flying in and out of the base nearly 24 hrs a day, 7 days ago. They fly from around 6a to around 10p. There's no schedule, no way to know when planes are landing or taking off, no way to know when there will be training...."Why should this be a problem?", you might be asking to yourself. Well, I'll tell you why. When planes are landing, or taking off, all traffic around the runway must stop. There are red traffic lights and warning bells at all the entrances of the flightline overrun roads to stop traffic for the planes. Usually traffic only has to stop for 4 -5 min as one plane lands or takes off, a little longer if it's really big, or more than one plane. This is a major pain in the butt when you're in a hurry or running late (which 99% is exactly what I am). And it's completely unavoidable. There is no way to get to the othe side of the base, other than going off base and driving a-l-l t-h-e w-a-y around it to the other side (easily a 40 min drive) and no way to know when it's going to happen. And here's what happens if you're unlucky enough to try to cross during training:
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These C-130's are practicing "touch and go's", they take off, land, taxi, take off, land, taxi.....over and over and over again. If their timing is just right, there isn't enough time to let the traffic cross the runway between take-offs or landings, so you just have to sit and wait, and wait, and wait.

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>These videos were taken on Wednesday. I was on the main side of the base and just needed to run home and grab something, normally a 15 min round trip. It took me 40 minutes! I got stopped in both directions. And I was in such a hurry! At one point I actually pulled my hair and screamed. It seems so benign, and I suppose in the big picture, it's a small, insignificant thing, but in my tiny, little corner of the world, it's INFURIATING!!!!!!


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2 comments:

illahee said...

it certainly sounds frustrating. what a strange bit of planning. probably from a limited space and a growing community. what fun! (just a bit of sarcasm there.)

my dad was in the navy so i feel a little bit justified in being sarcastic. hope you don't mind! ;)

Slime said...

Sarcasm from a fellow military brat is always welcome ;)

So today's traffic delays were kind of cool, 4 F-18's doing T&G's, our own private air show! (plus I wasn't in a hurry LOL)We don't have jets based here, so when they come it's a real treat for Ethan (and his geek-o daddy)!