On an unusually grey Sydney afternoon in October 2006 MiGMan was a guest of Microsoft at the launch of their new flagship product - Microsoft Flight Simulator X.
The creme-de-la-creme of Australia's gaming journalists gathered at Kingsford Smith Airport, Sydney, and embarked on a champagne flight over Sydney Harbour in a C-47, the military transport version of the Douglas DC-3.
After getting special permission from a nervous civil aviation authority an RAAF F-111 was granted permission to fly at under 500 feet altitude - practically IN the stadium during the closing ceremony. As it passed over the flame the pilot engaged afterburner and then dumped fuel, resulting in the trademark 100 foot plus trail of fire - as if a chariot of the gods had picked up the flame on the way to Greece.
As it flew 14 kilometres towards the Sydney Harbour Bridge it was accompanied by a sea of flame as the Parramatta River seemed to explode, with fireworks every 500 metres.
The P-51D, which I flew, was a very straightforward airplane in every way. By that I mean it wasn't difficult to fly or hard to handle, as long as you remembered a few basic things. First and foremost, you never forgot for a minute that it could bite hard if you got careless.
I went to Europe in July 2001 in quest of the perfect cup of coffee.From the cockpit of a 767 at 39,000 feet to subterranean German Bunkers. I saw many a strange and wonderful thing along the way. But did I ever find that holy grail?