Monday, October 25, 2010
The plane climbs to altitude and you hear nothing over the roaring engines but your own pounding heart. You feel every bumpy air pocket and you pray that you aren't the first to puke. Packed in like sardines in those cold and cramped conditions, you feel a palpable tension building--a giant spring has been compressed inside that C-130 and that spring cannot wait to uncoil. You try to relax, to appear stoic, but inside your guts are churning and you know there is only one remedy: the open door, the green light, the shuffle, and the moment when you half jump, half get sucked into space. You dream about that brief feeling of freedom until all of the sudden, it's happening, and just as soon as you realize you are falling, your reverie is cut short by the violent shock of your parachute opening. You snap back to reality, check your canopy, and look around you. The sky is filled with 102 pissed off paratroopers, and somebody near the Drop Zone is fixin' to find out what happens when Uncle Sam opens a Can-o-Whoopass.
More about the C-17 Globemaster is HERE