Thursday, January 1, 2009

A Pirate Looks at Fifty

Everybody who knows me knows that I really like Jimmy Buffett music. I own many of his CD's and listen to him quite frequently. The sounds of the carribean music mentally stretch me across a hammock laced between two lazy palm trees with ice blue water in the near distance as I suck down countless pina coladas. It's just pure heaven for me.

I flew Beech 1900D's to a Navy Submarine Base located on Andros Island in the Bahamas. Could possibly have been the best flying gig known to man-kind. Fly out to the island, 1 hour, land, change into swimming trunks and go lobster hunting for the next 3 to 4 hours, change back into my uniform, pre-flight, and 1 hour flight back to Palm ladies and gentlemen, that is a flying gig!! And on top of all that, I GOT PAID TO DO THIS!!

Well, one afternoon, on the trip back to Palm Beach, the radios were unusually quiet. I had the speed pegged at the barber pole so as to get home a little early. "Palm Beach approach, AUTEC ONE, Ten thousand with Yankee!" Then I heard, "Palm Beach, N208JB, 7000 Yankee." I knew that voice!! It was like I heard the strumming of guitars in the background as he called in.

Now it just so happened that I had been reading one of Jimmy Buffett's books, "A Pirate Looks at Fifty" and had taken it to the island for some catch-up reading. I knew that he had to clear Customs just like I did, and I knew that I was going to get there first. So, I waited there a few minutes , just like any loyal Parrotthead would do.

When he finally came through Customs, I greeted him with a smile and a hand shake. He was extremely friendly and asked me all about my flying. I told him that I was reading his book, and would he mind signing it for me, which he did. I then told him that the stories he wrote were really interesting to me and that I was enjoying them alot. And with a smirk on his face as he was leaving the Customs Building, he threw one arm up in the air and proudly proclaimed, "They're all Lies!!"

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