Come Fly the Afghan Skies
As I was heading back to Kandahar Airfield (KAF) the other day, I had the privilege of sitting in the front directly behind the pilots in a C-27J airplane. I had never had that experience before of getting to watch trained individuals fly a plane so it was quite exciting.
Field Rep Chrissy Burbach flying in a C-27J airplane
We had a fairly smooth ride; however, due to inclement weather, there was not much to see outside with all the cloud coverage. Our pilots were Tom and Britt, members of the Air National Guard who explained to me the basic working s of the plane. They also showed me where to locate my oxygen mask in case of an emergency, but thank goodness I didn't need it. Though there was no in-flight entertainment, I did get my own headset which allowed me to listen in on the communication between the pilots and the air traffic control tower at KAF for the entire ½ hour duration.
The plane had a whole smorgasbord of controls, switches, and blinking lights that looked like something out of a sci-fi movie which determined altitude, speed, direction, etc. to ensure we got there efficiently without crashing into any other aircraft. Luckily, I got to take as many pictures as I wanted granted the flash was off.
Tom's and Britt's tours are coming to an end so I want to wish them safe travels as they return back home to their loved ones.
Afghanistan Field Rep