In a stroke of serendipitous destiny, it just so happens that one of the world's largest air shows is in Wisconsin. So we really had no choice but to make the two hour drive north to Oshkosh so our little airplane boy could see the formation flyers, aerial stunts, and the hundreds of airplanes on display on the ground.
"He did a corkscrew! Did you see that, Daddy?
And that one did a falling leaf! Wow! That's amazing!"
What we didn't realize, is just how thrilled Jonathan would actually be. It turned out to be a kind of Disney World for him, where he got to meet in person the characters he'd grown to love in shows and books. He ran from airplane to airplane saying, "Mommy! B-17 is here! It has four c'pellers. And there's B-25, he has 2 c'pellers." Or, "Daddy, can we see the Corsair? Pleeeeease??" Or, "There's the Ospry--it's a helicopter and an airplane."
As we walked up and down the rows and rows of airplanes, Jonathan gasped and exclaimed, "It's DC-3! It's DC-3! Mommy, DC-3 is here! Come, Mommy! Hurry!" DC-3 is one of his favorite planes, he has a little one that he sleeps with sometimes. I looked where he was pointing, about 500 yards away, and it kind of looked liked his little plane. So we walked over, and when we got there I looked at the sign and realized it really was a DC-3! He had recognized it from so far away, and to me it looked like any other 2-prop plane.
And they were giving tours. We climbed in and walked up and down the aisle. The owner was there, and I pointed him out to Jonathan. J said, "Thank you so much for letting me see your DC-3."
When I told the owner it was J's favorite airplane, he laughed and said he needed a picture of the little guy. After posing for the picture, the owner suggested J sit in the cockpit, which was roped off. He said, "I don't let everyone in the cockpit, but for a fellow DC-3 lover, I'll make an exception.
It was a dream come true for J-man. He couldn't believe his good luck.
We also saw another of J's favorites: the Stearman, which he also spotted from far away and could differentiate from the rest of the bi-planes.
When he saw an airplane he didn't recognize, he'd ask us, "What's that airplane's name?" Of course, we had no idea, and we wished Dap was around to tell us! Maybe next year...
But it didn't matter. Jonathan had an amazing time, and so we all did too.
Including B, the ever-supportive little bro, who slept almost the whole time.