How exciting it is to watch the airplane flyby always!!! When i was a kid my mother used to tell me “Aeroplane bantu, Aeroplane bantu” (In the native language Kannada it means “a plane has arrived/flying”), and i used to head straight out of my home leaving all activities and look up at the sky. My joy used to be unlimited and i was screaming at the top of my voice so that if anyone could spot me from the aeroplane. Well laughing it away today at the moment when I think about those days of my childhood and reminiscing it. I exactly do not remember the first flight with my parents as I was a toddler.
I think all our dreams, imaginations and ambitions have a flight, we dream to make something happen for our future. We visualise that things have to become easy and start to chase the chances around us. Nevertheless, do not want to get too philosophical here and the object of my write up today is related to the Aeroshow I attended back in 2011 and know it’s too early to bring it now. I had a fantastic experience because it was the first time I saw many different models of planes decked up right in front of me. There were contests, people running around with their children climbing atop the display models, boys and girls gleefully with their wide stunned eyes capturing pictures of each other, and there existed a contest where you had to answer few questions and the winner would get an opportunity to manoeuvre a stealth combat aircraft as a co pilot for thirty minutes in the air. Just thinking about flying at the mach speed was enough to give everyone the jitters and I was however to remain disappointed as the contest had ended and also it was the last day of the show.
It was a very hot afternoon on the 3rd of february in 2011 and I had bought the ticket for aeroshow a few weeks before the event. I did not want to miss the edition as I had the previous ones and since now there was the liberty to buy the tickets with my own money. My younger brother was unlucky and he had to return back from the event as he had no ticket and I was thinking that the tickets would be available at the entry. I was disappointed to be alone and after leaving him to get back home, I started to walk towards the gate and entered the grand arena of the flights. Everything was looking like a dream and for a moment it was gigantic cyber space experience. As a common man who would have access in day-to-day life to witness such grand machineries and elaborate control modules.
The ticket I had purchased was a business ticket which had permit for me to view the exhibition area in the Aeroshow. The normal ticket which is a tad bit priced lesser than the business version and has access only to the place where the flights are flown and exhibited on the tarmac. I was spell-bound and walked to every corner of the floor space, enquired every detail about what I could get, pulled out every technical manuscript which was available. In other words I was dashing across through everyone to view the grand spectacle of objects laid out in front of me. There were many things which were beyond anyone’s understanding and everyone was enjoying it though.
After wandering around the exhibition area, then I made my way towards the outer bays and saw many a planes, helicopters, boeings, raptors, gripens, India’s very powerful Light Combat Aircraft, The French Raffael, SAAB and many more which I cannot remember right now. I wanted to make space for myself so that I would have a very good view of the entire show and had my camera ready for the captures. The show was about to start at 2:30 pm and i waited with my hat on in the hot sun. I had my bottle aside, the shades on the eyes, my curious eyes wandering all over as who would be the first to fly. Nothing happened for ten whole minutes, I was waiting every moment and for some reason I just turned back and shouted at the top of my voice to my delight. I actually forgot that I was in the midst of a huge crowd but there was a formation of the beautiful acrobatic Sarang’s which made me scream with happiness. What a fantastic show it was to start with the Sarang’s, and they did not disappoint the crowd with their formations.
The crowd gasped for three whole hours, the mightiest of the mighty displayed their skills in the stealth combat fighter jets. The fighter jets were an absolute beauty to watch, they took off right in front of us, the pilots were so skilled to do the splits, somersaults, vertical spins, horizontal take offs and steep drops (many other daring skills which i cannot name). It was all happening in front of me and the time was the best of my life. The very newly introduced Hercules C130J by the Indians was a vast eye catcher and was basking in the sun like a woman with her tan on. Everything was burning the sky down and every flight was making it more exciting, every pilot was applauded like a jockey jumping his horse on a long trail. The crowd was on its toes for few moments when the Indian cricket captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni arrived at the venue and entered the Hercules C130J, I too saw him up close barely few yards away from me and wanted to pull out an autograph but there was a barricade to prevent such things.
The show was closed by the Surya Kirans which ruled the Indian skies in acrobatic skills for a long time. This team was performing for the last time and I just rued at the idea of them not performing again because they were so flamboyant to show their properties ruled the skies. It was awe-inspiring and just ruthless show of skill, precision and accuracy. There were totally 9 number of Surya Kirans and I was happy to be a part of their history in the last show they performed. The clock had moved very soon and the show had ended, I vowed to return to the next one. I missed it and come in the year 2015, the month of February would be special again to watch the gladiators rule the roost in the arena of skies. I hope you make sure to be there and certainly if you miss it, it is the best among, food, gaming, television, zople, bompala and others at least for one day.