Wednesday, September 03, 2008

The Blue Angels Let Me Down!!!

Something's missing in this photo.

It sounded like such a wonderful opportunity. Local tv news stations reported that the Blue Angels Navy flying team had come into Maine a few days early before their scheduled show this weekend at Brunswick Naval Station, and would be doing a special fly-by near three different Maine lighthouses.

It isn't everyday one has the chance to shoot the magnificent Blue Angels low flying past the most historic lighthouse in Maine. The Pemaquid Lighthouse is so important to Maine history that it is featured on the new Maine quarters.

So I headed down to the lighthouse, a 30 mile trip, even got there a bit early so I could pick a favorite spot. A hundred people were there, but it's a big place and there was plenty of room. The estimated time of arrival was 10:30 - 11:30 am, not particularly great for lighting, but beggars can't be choosers, so I just waited and played with various settings.

And waited. And waited. Several hundred more people showed up. Families, tourist, dogs (with owners in tow), seniors, mothers with babies, people in wheelchairs, just about every kind of human you can imagine had arrived. I found that it was not only getting really crowded, but that I needed to stand in one place to reserve the spot for my shot; I even moved a couple feet in various directions, otherwise my spot would be filled with a zillion people. After all, a free Blue Angels show was a really big deal for rural Maine, even if would be a 30 second show.

Of course, I had no way of knowing if the Blue Angels would be flying by the lighthouse at the specific angle I needed to get the shot. But I'd carefully chosen a place that covered the lighthouse up close yet still allowed a lot of sky, and then kept my fingers crossed.

After two hours, still no Blue Angels. The officially designated hour had come and gone, and all those people were still patiently waiting. Toddlers were tired and whiny, dogs were having spats, and people were becoming grumpy and unfriendly. Finally, a man with a megaphone came out of the lighthouse's guardhouse, and politely announced that the Blue Angels would not be coming, something about a fuel issue. (And then he quickly ducked back into the guardhouse, probably anticipating things being thrown at him . . . )

A few boos and hisses, plus a lot of very disappointed commentary - and then everyone rushed for their cars. The weather was beautiful, and if the Angels weren't coming, they knew they all had other places to be.

So now I have a whole lot of test pix of the lighthouse, but no Blue Angels.

Dear Angels - you let me (and hundreds of fans) down!!!!


Giles said...

beth pulsipher said...

After reading that article, it's hard to believe that the Blue Angels publicist could spread the fly-by info through 2 tv stations since the night before, but couldn't figure out how to have those same tv stations let everyone - many HUNDREDS of people!!! - know that they were canceling due to fuel issues.

How inconsiderate of the Navy!

melanie said...

how disappointing!
sorry you got stood up, beth...

i'm bummed for ya. :(

Henrik said...

Sorry that they did not show up and you had to wait so long, but that photo if the lighthouse is awesome! Do you have photos of all the dogs too?

beth pulsipher said...

For all the dogs that were there, I'd probably still be shooting!! Dogs everywhere! With the exception of a minor snarling match, though, they were all pretty well behaved.