Two signs Im getting old

Discussion in 'Current Affairs, News and Analysis' started by Grownup_Rafbrat, Apr 28, 2008.

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  1. Grownup_Rafbrat

    Grownup_Rafbrat LE Book Reviewer Good Egg (charities)

    Today I read that the Dakota is making its final passenger-carrying flights in July.

    With the VC10 and Comet, the Dakota was an icon of air travel in my youth. When Easysquash and Ram-em-in-air weren't even nightmares in someone's head, and travel was a leisurely and exciting process, enjoying the journey as well as the arrival.

    And Templehof Airport is to close. Berliners had a referendum on its future but only 20% of them bothered to vote. 25% are needed for a quorum, so it's closing from the Autumn. Designed for one megalomaniac dictator as the entrance to 'Germania', and used heavily in the Berlin Airlift in defiance of another, it will be a shame to see it go.
  2. And which airline still uses Dakotas to carry passengers? It must be some outlandish crew, Air America perhaps?

    Oh, and thanks for reminding me that I'm getting old, the perfect start to the week.
  3. old_fat_and_hairy

    old_fat_and_hairy LE Book Reviewer Reviews Editor

    I recall when a dakota was the height of luxury. Prior to flying on them I had been used to outside toilets, stopping to take on coal, and dodging that pesky Red Baron!

    But, the Dak was an iconinc airplane, used for many purposes, but was a stalwart in the aforementioned Berlin Airlift.

    However, we all know that rafbrat is not getting old at all. Just the world has changed a tad.
  4. Grownup_Rafbrat

    Grownup_Rafbrat LE Book Reviewer Good Egg (charities)

    You're very kind, Mr. OFNH, but I fear I AM getting old. From liberty bodices to VC10s and IBM mainframes, stuff I was accustomed to seeing and using in my youth is appearing in museums nowadays!
  5. And I thought you were going to say its when you nasal hairs start growing out from your ears! :)

    Sad to see regulations kill them off is such a way - you should be able to fly in them as a passenger under your own liability!


    P.S As for the Dak had the pleasure (or not) of a flight in one years ago in Africa certainly got a feel for what the Paras went through in 44! Experience of a lifetime though.
  6. Ex-Stab Thanks for the link.
  7. Talking about Dakotas on OCA the other day,quite a few of us were carried on them in Aden,1961,on Aden Airways who were a tiny part of BOAC I believe.They were used for replenishing sub units up in Mountains using makeshift air strips,all very Gunga Din.
  8. Grownup_Rafbrat

    Grownup_Rafbrat LE Book Reviewer Good Egg (charities)

    Hmm. I WAS going to arrange a trip in a hot air balloon to celebrate my forthcoming birthday-with-an-0-at-the-end. Maybe a trip on a Dakota would be more fitting.

    Thanks for the linky.
  9. old_fat_and_hairy

    old_fat_and_hairy LE Book Reviewer Reviews Editor

    Ah, Aden Airways. Must have been a very,very tiny part of BOAC.
    I recall flying in an Auster from there and landing at some patch of scrub named Al Anad.
    Made a nice change from the cool and pleasant drive up the Dhala road!
  10. Thanks for this thread Grownup. Seem to remember Intra Airways? Jersey, used to fly these on passenger jollys, didn't Air Atlantique at Coventry do the same? They certainly employed Daks on dispersant duties on oil slicks.

    Nothing like seeing a Dak beasting down a runway, tail waggling and the radials banging. Recommend Bridge too Far or 'Airline' for that essential ahhhhh Dakota fix of course :D.

    Never mind the EU , no doubt they'll still be carrying passengers somewhere in the world when they reach 100.

    As for Tempelhof, the decision made by the Mayor to close it, regardless of the referendum result is staggering

    It is iconic , one of those really impressive places you can stand in, and just immerse yourself in the history. An essential part of Berlin to my mind.
  11. Grownup_Rafbrat

    Grownup_Rafbrat LE Book Reviewer Good Egg (charities)

    I never went inside it, but saw it from the outside and was deeply impressed. (That's the trouble with guided tours, you can't stop where you want to!).

    Shame my Dad was in the wrong trade for a Berlin posting.
  12. The BOAC Comet 4 and the EAA Dakotas were loved by a whole generation of schoolkids; well, loved when going back to wherever their parents were serving in hot places, but loathed at the beginning of term in some windy Scottish highland. In East Africa, a Dakota would do a round trip of the country, picking up snotty kids at every mailstop airfield before transferring them to big brother at Dar, Nairobi or Entebbe.

    Every couple of years, of course, there was the special treat of a trip home by Union Castle or BI, round the Cape or through the canal. All long gone, with the beef tea and deckchairs. "BA" won't let you sit in the Captain's chair now, either.
  13. We could all chip in and buy the one that's still sat outside the Airborne Museum here in Aldershot! All we need is a pilot and an air stewardess and we could make a fortune. Step aside Ryan Air.
  14. The_Duke

    The_Duke LE Moderator

    Flown in, and jumped out of, the BBMF Dakota over Arnhem on the 60th anniversary.

    To be honest, it only served to remind me just how nails the pilots, crew and passengers of these aircraft were at the time. Even the well maintained BBMF one ran like it was burning a mix of 2 star and home brew and bounced all over the shop.

    Wouldn't have missed it for the world! :D