The Adventures of Me & My Shadow #66 in VA, MD 10/28/01
134 miles this trip, odometer now 12,330 total, miles this year 11,997.
>From Delmar, MD, Hi Everyone!

While waiting in VA Beach for my Dr.'s appointment. I have had time to watch NBC TV coverage of the disaster in NY. I am amazed at their disregard for national security. Their investigative reporters who interview government and military officials ask questions about our intentions and planed actions. I see this as classified information. The general population does not need to know it and it is of great value to the terrorist organizations. I wonder if NBC is receiving money from Bin Laden to get this valuable information for him? I also wonder about the officials who gave this information for public disclosure.

The Doctors appointment went well. He told me I was not yet a candidate for a mechanical heart. After pointing out on the heart monitor recording every time the pulse was triggered by the pacer in my defibrillator (I never realized just how much my defibrillator was doing.) he said he would improve my condition and he did. He changed one of my prescriptions and increased the dosage on one and I now feel a lot better and I am no longer as short of breath. I have to go back in a month for some blood tests before I head south. Because he is a Doctor and I am a mechanic we each see the mechanical hearts differently. He doesn't see them as a viable option and I think I could live many years with one, hell, I might even have a 12 volt adapter on it so I could plug it into the cigarette lighter while I am driving the old GMC.

Next I headed up to Jenny's place to pick up my mail and I had promised her I would transfer the patches to the new Boy Scout uniforms she had bought for the boys. I got that done and headed up to Jeff's and backed the old coach into the shed and finally got the thermostat changed and it is again running with normal temp.
The days keep getting shorter, I got some more work on the Honda Civic, the only thing left to do on it is a new battery when my granddaughter Rebekah gets her learners permit. So I'm ready to head south
get my defibrillator and blood checked before heading to Florida.

I just finished reading the book "Flying with Iron Angels" written by Charles Houston, the Navy Pilot who designed the Iron Angel emblem (a knight in armor with angels wings a machine gun over his shoulder and a hallow over his head) it was the emblem for VF-14 in WW2 (Charles Houston's squadron). After the war it was the emblem for VF-141 my squadron in 1955/56 when I was an Iron Angel.

In 1944 when Chuck was flying with Iron Angels in a big taskforce fighting the Japs almost every day in the islands north of the equator I was in the islands south of the equator servicing PBY flying boats used for hunting Jap subs and doing air sea rescue flights. The Japs had been pushed north a few months before I got there. We had a few air raids, a recon plane would come aver one night, we would then move our ship and the next night a bomber would come and drop a bomb where we were the other night. They never
did any harm and we never fired at them. The PBYs would follow our bombers north and wait in a safe zone away from the targets for them to come back. If the bombers were shot up and unable to make it back to their base they would land in the ocean, get in life rafts and the PBY would land and pick them up and bring them back. This was before helicopters. Some times the bomber crews would be wounded and some times they would bring dead bodies back for proper burial at sea.

It was when one of these rescue flights returned that I witnessed a young man who was experiencing more severe pain in a few short hours than most of us experience in our life time. The bomber he was in was hit and was burning when they landed in the ocean. The PBY picked up the survivors, when I first saw him he was standing up in the boat bringing him from the PBY to the ship. As they came closer I see that he was severely burned. His cloths had been burned off, All he had on was his belt and his shoes: When they got to the ship he chouse to climb a vertical ladder rather than to lie down in a stretcher so they could hoist him aboard. The flight crew said he stood up all the way from take off to landing. As he walked past me on the ship I see most of the skin from his back was hanging down over his belt, I could see his mussels moving as he walked, I don't recall seeing any blood. The next day we learned that when he got to sick bay he lay down in a bunk, closed his eyes, his heart stopped and his pain ended. I counted my blessings and thanked God that I was not in a flight crew.

In his book, Chuck said they lost half the pilots that were in his squadron when they went to sea. They had a kill ratio of 17 to 1. For every plane they lost, they shot down 17 Japs. This was in addition to all the Jap planes that the ships shot down.

I got a chance to work on a project that I started about 10 years ago when I first got the sun screen for the windshield. It does a good job of filtering the sun and I can see out in daylight and people can't see in. It was drab looking and I wanted to put something on it to liven it up a little and still allow me to see out. A picture came to my mind of two people camping in a tent when during the night they hear something right
outside the tent exit. The next morning they pull down on a tent panel to see what is out there and they see this giant spider that has built a web across the exit, as they are looking at it, it is looking at them and planning it's next meal.

When I started this project I never realized how little I know about spiders and their webs. I wish I had paid more attention to them. I could have used some help in designing the spider and it's web. If I find time I can expand the web some but right now I've had enough.

Till next time, Dallas or Dad if it fits.

Me & My Shadow & Gus on the road

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