NFR (Dec 18)

NFR is the code we use when there is “No Flight Required” and I hate making these entries in my weekly and monthly log. If I had my way I’d wake up, eat breakfast, go to the helicopter around 8 in the morning, fly for two hours, then after lunch do the same thing. Instead, today, NFR.

So what do you do on a day like today when there is NFR? This is where coming prepared with a hard drive full of movies comes in handy. This is where having computer games, or cell phone games, or a good book is essential. But don’t be a recluse.

Make sure you emerge from your cave of comfort and air conditioning every now and then to mingle with the crew. Joke with them, chat with them in broken English, but for the most part just make sure you smile and laugh and look confused when they say something you don’t understand.

Why? Why waste your time being political and making the rounds? Because these people are the only people you get to see and interact with at all while you’re at sea. Beyond that they are good for if you need something. Say, a shelf built or box of ramen? If they like you that isn’t a tall order. Need a haircut but afraid to clipper your own noggin? They can help there too. Infact today was the day of haircuts for the crew, and I’m not exactly planning on getting in that line anytime soon.

Four or five of them are wearing close to the scalp buzz cuts. That I can do myself, I just take the guard off of the clippers and run it over my head like they did at basic training. I know the routine. Eventually your scalp starts bleeding and you have no hair – that’s normal right?

Actually I’ve already made a resolution for this year and that is, to keep growing my hair and beard out for the year I’m out here and see what I come up with next December. I’m not saying I’m going to turn hippy and grow out a long set of locks, but I am going to see what happens with one year of more or less unrelenting hair growth. I already clippered my beard once to make it not so gnarly but, that’s only going to happen every other month or so.

See what happens on a NFR day? You get a beard and hair post. Would someone email my Captain and tell him to fly me more? Please. No seriously. Because…beard and hair posts. Seriously.

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