The day of air station selection finally arrived!! So for the non-military crowd, a bit of explanation... Each pilot goes through the first section of flight school and comes out with a score. Each pilot then gets to put in a "dream sheet" of air stations in order of rank of where you want to go. Its called a dream sheet for a reason. There aren't enough air stations to give everyone their top choice. And there certainly aren't enough openings at the air stations to even give everyone their top choice of air frame! (The Coast Guard flies 2 type of helicopters and each air station only has one kind.) The Coast Guard Capt here takes everyone's score, their dream sheet, and the air station openings and starts matching people up. Those with a higher score start with higher priority. Of course, no one knows what their or others scores are, and only the Capt knows where the openings are... this leads to a LOT of rumors! Now this is where this Capt and being in the CG rocks. He goes through matches them up, AND looks at why the pilot wants that air station. Does he/she really want to fly THAT airframe? Or is he/she dying to be on the West Coast regardless of what type of helo he/she is flying? We picked places based on grad school options for me.
Ok, back to selection day: We arrived and the Capt found us, told us that we "had" our #2 choice of LA, but now the guys at CG headquarters had pulled a few slots and the Capt had to re-rack the whole thing!! This meant that he could give us our #5 choice of Puerto Rico (where I might hope to work at Arecibo (think 007-golden eye or Contact - it's the big telescope in the ground), or we could take our chances with the re-rack.... AHHHH!!!! If he hadn't told us that we had our #2, we probably would have taken PR. But now since we were teased with getting one of our top picks we had to take our chances.
So the Capt is a creative guy. For each aviator, he had him/her plus any family that was there, come down in front (to the tune of "The Price is Right" - sick sense of humor this man!) and on a giant screen are the patches of different air stations. One by one... painfully slowly... each patch disappears until there is one: the patch for your station. Our turn!.. one by one they fade out until Air Station LA is the only one left!!!!! YEAHHH!!!!!!!! I pounced on Adam. Literally. No joke. In front of his command AND pilot peers - i jumped up on him and latched on and kissed him like none other!.... I have never seen him turn so red!! hehehehe - that just added to make happiness and laughter!
Ok so back to how this relates to the wedding! This means that we have narrowed it to the Florida panhandle, Pennsylvania, and the LA area!
(Images Courtesy of: Coast Guard Price is Right and Air Station LA)