Saturday, August 16, 2008

The Wright brothers were two of seven children

Today Delaware airport held an airshow! (I think it ran for a couple other days, but we came today, so…) My 88 year old neighbor Ed loves planes and used to fly a few himself, so we loaded him up in the car and headed out. (Ask him about the time he almost ran into something; there’s several versions, but he’s an amusing storyteller, even when he gets the stories all mixed up.) Ed had an outstanding time, looking at all the planes, wondering over their engines, their power. He kept insisting he needed to just have a few hours, and he’d have one of the planes he was most familiar with up in the air, just like he used to. Instead he mostly just talked with several of the owners, and even got what he says was his first chance to really see a helicopter up close. (Whether this is true or not, time may only know.) The pilot was very kind, helping Ed to sit in one of the two seats it had, explaining everything Ed wanted to know. (Ed tossing in not a few of his rather endearing “Good night!” exclamations at some of the information.)

Later on we got to see a model of the engine the Wright brothers used on their 1903 plane, as well as a to-scale model of their 1905 plane. Along with this model they had several little displays oriented to the younger crowd in hopes of sparking their interest in planes. Amongst these was a flight simulator for how the Wrights would fly their 1903 model, and Ed, who was reading a book on the Wright’s plane at the time, was ecstatic at getting a chance to try it out. There’s something interesting in an 88 year old man lying on his stomach, attempting to steer a projected image of a plane around the screen.

German Word: One of my all-time favourite German phrases has to be “Ich kann fliegen!!!!”, meaning “I can FLY!” I highly suggest shouting this before madly flapping one’s arms about for best results.

For your enjoyment.

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