I don’t have a lot of memories from my school years, good or bad. But some of the memories I do have are of helicopters! When I was younger, my dad worked on them and every year his work would have a family day. The big draw to make sure people came out (or, more accurately, to make sure the less social of the families, like us, came out) was going up in the choppers.
It was definitely a draw for me.
I’ve flown in a lot of aircraft in my life (though, of course, there are many people who have been in more) and even ‘flown’ one before (that’s a story for a different blog post). Of all of them, helicopters are definitely my favourite. My Venture Scout leader even arranged to have my investiture in a chopper. He had been planning this outing for us for a month or so (there weren’t many of us in the group and he had connections). As it was close to when the ceremony should have taken place anyway, I asked if it could be done then. And awesome experience for sure!
At the time, I was living in Alberta, near the Saskatchewan border. I always knew it was a beautiful area, even then. After all, I spent enough time playing in the woods (another blog post story). If I didn’t know this before, touring the area from the air was a great reminder. We would fly over the woodland, skimming the tops of the pine trees; blue sky all around us and a sea of gree broken up by small islands of brown trails, blue rivers and the cascading white of rapids and waterfalls.
I looked forward to it every year and the half hour ride always ended too soon.