Friday, September 26, 2008

AAD 2008

On Saturday the 20th September 2008 we attended the AAD 2008 airshow at the Ysterplaat base near Cape Town. We have been to a few shows at Ysterplaat and did not expect too much as there did not appear to any new on the program. We were wrong!

The normal highlights of the show are the vintage jets from Thunder City. The yellow Hunter and the black Buccaneer each made a brief appearance, but then we had and excellent display by a pair of Lightnings each breaking the sound barrier. There were so many complaints about this, that it was not repeated on Sunday.

The SAAF showed the Gripen, Hawk and Pilatus (Astra). The Hawk was in an awful colour scheme supposed to reflect the SA flag. The Silver Falcons now have a gaudy dark blue colour scheme. The SAAF museam was going to show a Mirage III, but it suffered a 3 bird strike at Cape Town International the day before. As a wing was damaged, it did not show.

There were also some great helicopter displays from the Augusta 109, Hind Mi24, Rooivalk, Lynx, Puma and Oryx.

The real stars of the show were the airliners! An Airbus A340 accompanied by 4 Astras made several flybys is perfect formation. A pair of Boeing 737s performed formation flying and breakaways fit for a fighter pair. Stunning.

There was also a simulated hijacking scene as well as parachute drops and armour drivebys.

Also some great arobatics:

The Zimbabwean Air Force displayed a Chinese K8 with a Brigadier in the back seat!

Over 100,000 people attended over the two days. A big problem this year was the mud. It had been raining for weeks and the water table was very high. The apron and tarred areas we used in the past were taken up by displays and hospitality tents, so were were forced to sit and stand in the muddy fields. Not fun.

To see more pictures, look here

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Ricoh GX100 at Chinese Cultural Evening

On the 6th of September 2008 we were kindly invited to a cultural evening at the Jameson Hall at UCT the celebrate the 10th anniversary of the formal SA/China trade relationship.

I took my GX100 along just in case I was allowed to use it. As almost everyone else was using a cellphone camera, I could have bought my Nikon D3 along! Its low light performance would have been ideal.

The low light and the fact that the acrobats were moving all the time, made it quite difficult to get sharp shots. These are some of my best results.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Memorial Service for Alan Pettit

This is a video of the Memorial Service for Alan Pettit held in the Brooklyn Kingdom Hall on Saturday the 13th of September 2008.

The speaker was Selwyn Wilmot who Alan studied with. The concluding prayer was by Ernest Linder. The hall was packed. Noticeable was the number of young people who attended the service.

Note that the video file is about 47mb in size and might take a while to load. The video quality is compressed for the web. Please excuse the poor sound quality due to the sound system in the hall.