Posts Tagged With: flying

My Dream Flight

Last night I had the strangest dream.  (Couldn’t help but sing the tune in my head while I wrote that line)  I know that I have always cherished the times when Mom visited me in my dreams – there have only been three times that I remember but each one was so powerful it left me reeling for days.  I was always so impatient that she come – her first appearance wasn’t until four months after she passed away.  I was on holidays with my family. 

Dad’s first appearance was last night – but it left almost no impression on me.  

There I was with Mom and Dad – both of them had been declared palliative.  (true)

Mom was upset, she said to me in tears, “I never did see France.  I always wanted to go to France.  Let’s go.”

She appeared to be so anxious to get to France with Dad and myself that I could do nothing other than try to make arrangements.  Here’s where fact blends with fiction – those dreams do pretty good jobs of blurring lines of reality.  I knew I could count on Veteran’s Affairs Canada to help – they had been so helpful in the past.  I thought maybe they’d be able to get us on a plane pronto and have France wave the passport issue.  

Next “scene” I recall, I’m on a plane with Mom and Dad and some other fellow who was declared palliative  – and on our way without passports to France. 

Next scene is in a hotel in France and Mom looks great – she is almost revived.  Dad is still not well – the other guy is … worse.  I have arranged care for everyone (true) and then I think we all go out for dinner.  You know what happens when you wait to write down your dream – it just gets more difficult to fill in the pieces of action. 

I remember feeling so excited that the trip to France had helped my parents to get better.  

I woke up at this point and thought, “Wow, I’m having a dream about Mom and Dad.  They have made their appearance.”  

When I fell back to sleep I was on a plane going home … by myself.  But I was not inside the plane – I was outside on the nose of the flight deck.  I thought I was in trouble and would not be able to get inside.  The plane was flying very low over the ground but as it approached the Atlantic Ocean I knew it would have to climb to get out of the way of the waves.  I was splashed several times.  Television screens lined the ocean to give sun-bathers and swimmers a glimpse of what the ocean looked like further out.  I realized this part of the trip was going to get cold (it was dark) and wet and I need to get inside.  So, I did what anyone would do – I knocked on the pilot’s window.  He heard my knocking and was a bit startled. Nonetheless, I climbed down the side of the window to the ledge and the pilot opened his window to allow me to slide in to safety.  

What the heck?  

Were Mom and Dad in the plane too?  I don’t remember.  

I made it safely so that I could return home to Canada. 

Planes, palliative, passports, Paula.  Was this a “P” based dream? 

France, freezing cold, flights, father.  Or was this dream a dream of “F”s? 

Mom and Dad travelled to many places, but never France.  What on earth I dreamed that Mom wanted to go to France for?  Your guess is as good as mine.  

As for my flight home, well, it was no “dream flight”.  

TTFN

Sorry this post was so random.  Just thought I’d share some of the confusion – my gift to you.  

Categories: Uncategorized | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

Lobster Air

Introduction

When Dad told me this story – just a few months before he passed away – I was shocked.  Of all the stories I had heard growing up, this one had been kept a secret.  Maybe it wasn’t a secret but it had certainly slipped into the back files of his mind.  Dad didn’t really think this was a story at all and “It isn’t really worth repeating.”, he said.   Writing the update to the story, I did some research about the Straits and lobster there – found an article from the Toronto Star which puts another layer to the story about lobsters.  Kind of interesting read for those of you who are lobster fans!  (http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/article/1238462–new-brunswick-lobster-fishermen-fight-for-higher-prices)

“Oh, my goodness, Dad.  This is funny!”  I replied.  I must confess that I didn’t understand a few aspects of the story since I didn’t really put the story into the context of World War II and the fact that fishermen didn’t have access to much needed fuel.  After a few questions and a bit of research, however, this is the story that emerged.  Enjoy!

Lobster Air (in Dad’s words)

Yes – lobster can fly – at least they did in Prince Edward Island during World War II!   Truthfully, the crustaceans were assisted with their flight and it wasn’t that the pilots were particularly welcoming of their aerial hitch-hike either.

We, members of the RCAF Squadron, were on patrol in the Northumberland Straits watching for German Submarines.  The Straits are located between Prince Edward Island and the “Mainland” – mainly New Brunswick and Nova Scotia.  Today, the Confederation Bridge New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island makes the trek between the two locations a little easier.  But, during World War II, the only way to “access” the area was by plane and air surveillance.  Although there had never been sightings in the Straits,  Germans had surfaced and were even so bold as to buy fish in Montreal.  I never did confirm that was the truth, but the rumor was pretty exciting.  Our mission was to criss-cross the Straits to watch for “enemy” subs.  (Funny how some of my best friends today are German.  Was sure is a strange thing!)

The Straits were well known for lobster.  Since my favorite meal was lobster I felt I was not only defending my country, but also my palate!  During lobster season, the fishermen were out in full force – not like today – but still there was many of them.  Since fuel was rationed during the war, the fishermen had to use sailboats to fish.

Some of the pilots – to conduct their patrol- would fly close above the water.  This would make a “slip-stream” behind the aircraft.  This slip-stream would unintentionally (or not) cause the  lobster farmers’ sailboats to tip over.

Oh boy, the fishermen became quite upset but it seemed there was little they could do.. until they figured out how they could retaliate.  When the low-flying pilots flew too low, the fishermen threw lobster up at the aircraft.  Some of the lobsters would become lodged in the wings.  This wasn’t really too much of a problem.  The fishermen felt they had had their “say” and the pilots were still able to fly without hazard.

The funny part of the story happened, though, when the pilots arrived back at base when the pilots took their planes to the maintenance crew for inspection.  The crew were quite surprised to find lobster stuck in the aircraft.  I guess for a while they figured the lobster jumped out of the water.  No one could figure out how the lobsters managed to hitch a ride.

Finally, the story emerged.  The low-flying pilots and their craft had unintentionally become, “Lobster Air”.  I guess we may have been the first to ship lobster into PEI!

Categories: Duff History, Life After Dad, Life's Lessons, World War II | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 16 Comments

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