A friend of mine told me that a great personality can get you many things that you would like and I must say, I agree with him! I was fortunate enough to meet a few helicopter pilots that transport passengers and mail — yes, mail! They were asking me what have I been able to do since I have been here and I stared at them dumbfounded as though every day is a journey outside the wire to see the sights. So, they were kind enough to manifest me on their trip to Farah to get the mail delivered. You could say that I was overwatch for the mail, the pilot/co-pilot and I assume load master (sorry, don’t really know what his official title is). They had me ensure that the bungee cord was securely keeping the important packages in place — truly though, to make sure that they didn’t jostle about and fall into my lap. 🙂
Flying in a plane can be a great experience, especially if the passenger next to you is friendly and may want to play travel scrabble, but there is something about being in a helicopter that is so exhilarating. Watching the pilots doing their cross checks, starting the blades to get the bird humming and just sitting there for two minutes waiting for them to warm up (I really don’t know why, but it sounds good), and not propel forward but lift up off the ground and somewhat hover as you get ready to begin the mail run! The helicopter shakes and rattles and hums and shakes some more as you sit and wait for lift off. The headphones that they wear — you think it’s all business with those covering their ears — think again! It was fun to laugh with them as I had the pleasure of listening in and yes, adding my two cents to their banter. All in all, they appreciated having a witty (yes, they did say witty) sarcastic, sports enthusiast passenger on the two hour round trip journey to Farah to unload the mail! When we returned, we headed over for a quick bite for lunch and they did say to come again anytime on the mail runs as it is nice to have “a scent of a woman ” on board! How sweet is that? 🙂
Farah is the home of the Citadel of Alexander the Great. I wasn’t able to hop off and tour the grounds but if you have a zoom feature when you click on the picture, you may be able to see the ruins of the fortress. The Citadel was a stop along the Silk Road between Persia and India back in the day! The other pics show the landscape of this country — mountainous terrain (I do have to say at one point I thought we were heading right for the peaks of the mountain, but nope, just scaled right above them — I did have an “Oh Shit” moment while watching us approach the mountain ridge!!), our battle buddy in the sky, and a neighborhood in the desert! Enjoy…. I must say that I did have a fun filled morning on Juma!