Friday, March 11, 2005

The President was in town

Yesterday, President George W. Bush was in Montgomery, Alabama as part of his "60 cities in 60 days" tour to promote his ideas about Social Security. Well, us aviation people know that whenever the President is anywhere, the FAA posts Temporary Flight Restrictions (TFRs) so that there will be no aircraft flyovers anywhere near the President. What us pilots may or may not know, whenever the President is in town, automobile traffic is disrupted severely also! From Maxwell AFB in Montgomery, Auburn University in Montgomery (AUM, where the President was going to speak) is about a 10-12 mile drive. For security reasons, nobody knew what route he was going to take to get there. Wouldn't you know, I had to drive from Montgomery to Auburn, 50+ miles away, to attend the month Society of Manufacturing Engineers (SME) meeting. I left early enough from work because I wanted to try to get a picture of Air Force One to post on the blog. Of course, the presidential 747 wasn't sitting on the runway in full view, so I didn't get a picture. However, I did miss all the road closings because "W" didn't leave the airbase until well after I was on my way to Auburn. Talk about cops! I must have seen 40 (no kidding!) cop cars in the 12 mile stretch to AUM. Some had logos on them that I hadn't ever seen before! Well, it was great that I missed the closings, but I did have to wait in my car for about an hour and a half to kill time before the SME meeting started. Oh well, I ate a Big Mac and listened to FM 92.7 "The River" in Columbus, Georgia until it was time for the meeting to start. Several people were very late to the meeting because they got caught in the traffic. It was an honor to have President Bush here in our town, but it sure does screw things up!


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