The dust in the air made sunset tonight a spectacular affair. The sky, streaked with long tendrils of cloud, was lit blood-red by the setting sun which, itself, dropped like a glowing coal behind a row of dunes. As I sat smoking (in my usual spot) and reflecting on the day, the muezzin in my guard compound tapped his microphone twice, cleared his throat, then broke into the Adhan in a clear and sonorous voice. Fat little sparrows bounced and chirped on the razor wire and two Mirage 2000D of l’Armee de l’Air roared overhead and banked to the north to line up for their finals into KAF.
It made me think. My boy can’t decide right now between being a chef (don’t do it son: slavery and bastardisation in the kitchen for no life and minimum wage) or a paratrooper like his old dad. Watching those Mirages I thought “Now there’s a way to go to war.” Son, work hard at your maths and physics and you can do that. Couple of missions a day then back to the Mess in time for tea and medals. Flight pay, soft beds and good food – what a deal! And when you’re older, you’ll appreciate the almost mystical relationship betwen pilots’ wings and the best looking woman in the room….
Mind you, boy, there isn’t a finer group of men on earth than those that jump into the unknown under a silk canopy…..