It’s that time of year again. It’s time for the caverns of downtown Seattle to rumble with the reverberated roar of afterburners.
Yep, Seafair 2012 is almost here, and the Blue Angels are practicing over Seattle. I know there are some people who complain, but frankly, I haven’t met any of them. Everyone I know finds any inconvenience created by the quintet of F/A-18 Hornets buzzing through our skies to be minor and totally, totally worth it.
Every year, during the break in Seafair’s hydro-races, there’s a air show and, for most of those years, the USN Blue Angels have been the headliner. But, like any good performing troupe, they have to rehearse, and that happens on the Thursday prior, so today, it’s like we’re at DefCon4. The skies are filled with contrails and the streets echo with the sound of sheer, unadulterated power.
If you’ve never been near one of these stupendous machines, here’s an example of what I mean.
A couple of years ago I left work and headed home at my regular time, 2:30pm (hey, I get in really early!). I got the bus stop just as the Blue Angels began their afternoon rehearsal. I saw one as it peeled off and zipped uptown. The jet was probably a mile away when the pilot turned away from me and hit the afterburner.
I felt it. I saw the fire of his exhaust and in my chest, I literally felt the power of that engine.
Sound and fury.