14 October 2005

Gunfighter Diary Desert Shield 08 Sep 90

8 SEP 90

160176, 5T2, .5, 260, Peewee
160176, 5T2, .6, 260/313, Peewee

Got hit by a freight train but showers felt great. Wind kicked up, so we felt kind of like sugar coated donuts in them morning. Washed my flight suit (swished around in a can of water), it had nice salty patches on it from sweating and was kind of crunchy. So of course it’s blazing today and I never sweated like I did today. Looks like I just stepped out of the shower. Guess I’m drinking enough water, anyway. We flew back to JNA to do an engine wash and wash the aircraft. Supposed to fly NVGs, but we got back to Manifa late because first aircraft broke. A bleed air valve malfunctioned and the number one engine compressor stalled, which makes a very loud thumping noise and gets everyone’s attention. We were on the ground, although airborne we wouldn’t have been in any great danger. Good timing, happened close to spare parts. So we got “home” late. It was too hazy, dusty, aka “particulate matter” to fly NVGs, so it worked out good for us. More MREs to eat, no field mess food for a week. Had 2 meals there so far. Pogey bait most welcome at this juncture.
A-6 hit a tower just east of here and Diamond/Super Dave skipped off the top of a sand dune. Heard an East Coast Cobra had a hard landing and rolled over (Rebel, later my H&HS CO). No one was killed. Taking things slower as we can stand to slow down a bit. Have to remember to be careful in the shower. Don’t sense anyone pushing it, boredom and repetition is our biggest enemy. Recognizing that is the key. Back to basics is also key; the time for shortcuts, if any were taken, is past. Spot has said on several occasions “if you’re not comfortable, rested, etc...don’t do it”. We’ve cancelled hops and training for all reasons, maintenance, pilots, grunts, because things weren’t falling into place. Cancelled an NVG hop a few days ago because everyone was tired.

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