I shall tell you a tale of honor and valor. I shall tell you a tale of true sacrifice and unconditional love. I shall tell you the tale of the mission impossible and the brave souls that proved it possible after all. This is the tale of the Impossible Mission Force. The target: tickets to ascend the Washington Monument.
At 0130 hours, the team landed at Fairfax Command and bedded down for the night. They awakened again between 0430 and 0500 for an 0530 departure from the hotel (therein lies the better part of the valor). Split into 3 squads, they boarded small-scale assault vehicles (cabs) and made for the primary rail line. There the team reunited and boarded rail-borne logistics. They exited rail logistics in 3x3x3 cover formation with Agent Anberg on point and Agent Cowden covering the rear. After traversing the national mall, they arrived at the ticket office at 0630, establishing their place in line.
After some adjustment, the team settled in to wait for the objective to come into range (meaning the office doesn't open until 0830). Agent Warren proceeded as most self-respecting field agents would: she adjusted her mascara. Agent Hudspeth gave instructions for securing the perimeter.
Man down! Man down! Man down! Agent Biccum 1 falls with mystery symptoms. He is attended by Agent Biccum 2 in possibly the cutest picture ever posted on the Music Mission blog.
By 0830, the line stretches...a long way. It is so long that those at the end may not receive tickets. But the Impossible Mission Force perseveres.
Impossible Mission Accomplished! Tickets secured. IMForce proceeds to dustoff zone for extraction a short time later.
"Fairfax command, fairfax command, this is IMForce requesting immediate extraction."
"Copy that IMForce. Proceed immediately to Old Ebbitt's Grill for breakfast."
The team evacuated to Old Ebbitts as instructed. They did not leave their fallen behind. If you look carefully, you can see him sleeping on the bench at the back of this picture.
The fruit of their labor is a remarkable view of the Washington area from 550 feet.
Unfortunately, it's absolutely true that Hudson was sick. He was the last holdout in his room: all 3 of his roommates have been sick. Now others have fallen as well. Some have sore throats, some sore bellies. One toe gashed at the Iwo Jima Memorial. Two prone to nosebleeds. Note to self: next year recruit a flight surgeon for the trip. Here are some of the folks who have been in sick bay this week.
Some were able to sing the concert. Some did not attempt it. Others began the concert but stepped out during. That condition will persist for the rest of tour. Unfortunately, due to some unexpected traffic shenanigans, we were late to the concert, but most of the crowd stayed around anyway, and it was our best concert so far.
Always love it when family shows up! Katie, Madeleine, and I all had family there for the oncert.
After the concert we headed to the Pit for dinner. If you're ever in Raleigh, I highly recommended it. Good food, and perfect for our event. We designated one table the infirmary for those who had been ill. Dinner was great!
Looks like these guys are enjoying themselves...
And of course it was senior night. So many seniors this year. I'll miss you all! Note in the photo Andrew has taken up his usual picture in front and invited Daniel to join him. Then the obligatory crazy photo...
Senior night is always bitter sweet. It's a joy and a privilege to know them and be a part of their lives. They are my friends, and I will miss them next year. I'll miss their voices, their laughs, and their smiles. But endings are only beginnings in disguise, and each is beginning a new adventure. Good luck, guys. Knock 'em dead. Make your lives extraordinary.
People Served Today: 57
Cumulative Total: 287 + unknown millions