I was talking to a retired military fighter online and he wrote this e-mail to me after I asked a question about what it was like to fly a fighter. I KNOW this will inspire people whos dreams are set on flying fighters to continue on, its not an easy journey, but WORTH IT! Read:
There were times when nothing was better. I'd put about 10% of my flying was better than sex.
There is something about being on top of the world, knowing you're strapped to a real killing machine and with raw power at your command.
You can turn the world anyway you want.
If it is up, you can shoot it down. If it is down, you can blow it up.
Wanna go fast? How about fast and low? How about ripping through a canyon at 100' pulling 5-6 G's to stay in the valley and have to yank it straight up 2000' to clear a waterfall? Talk about a rush.
How about doing lag rolls to cross a ridge in Korea at 50 feet at over 530 kts?
Or blowing the roofs off a nipa hut village as the sun comes up in afterburner?
Or flying in weather so poor in Germany that you have to do 4 positive 2 negative 3 positive to hop over churches that suddenly appear in front of you at the standard 480 kts?
Man you feel alive.
There is nothing that looks like the black and orange flame ball of a high explosive that you dropped when you're looking at it from above boiling up and out as you pull out from the dive.
Inverted rejoins are tricky but they sure are a gas.
Ever do a double rat's assed Australian snatch-back?
I've done full hammer head stalls intentionally to chase down guys in the vertical when fighting air-air.
Having two aircraft in blower, nose up, at something less than stall speed falling tail first and trying not to be the first guy to fall off and let the nose drop so you don't get hosed.
Doing a near 90 degree banked turn at tree top level pulling for all you're worth.
The delayed reaction you do as you mentally take a picture of the white clapboard house with two chimneys at either end and a mile after you've blown all the shingles off his roof the picture registers in your mind.
The camaraderie of a squadron at beer call.
That's the good part.