Chapter 220

We talked about the farm for another hour before we called it an evening. Because of the change-up I got to sleep with Jenny a night early. Even though I was still too sore to hold her tight, I could still tell when she was getting ready to giggle and rubbed her tummy. I wondered what the connection was. Maybe some day I could find out.

We had breakfast over at the gym. It was health food, fruits and grain things. It made me appreciate that tomorrow I was going to cook a real breakfast.

We saw Cindy and Mark off again to open another college security site. The North six left yesterday with the fleet of cars and the truckload of office equipment for the site. One of the men we had hired for a full time security employee was a former commercial truck driver who was tired of over the road driving. But he agreed to drive the truck down. We had two more weeks before the next one and that would be the last one down south.

We made our way to the meeting room to look over the print one more time before Tony, Kathy and Janet went over the presentation again. Marcy wanted to review the cost again and that did not surprise me one bit. We looked at several different layouts for the airport. We had several weeks before we needed to make a decision about the final layout.

Tony gave us the outline of the project. First Janet’s engineering prints for the runoff ponds would be sent directly to EPA administrators for approval. Janet was certified by the EPA though and we should have written approval or required design changes within a week and final approval in two weeks.

The EPA approved plan would be sent to the state and county for review. The plans included a control plan for rain water runoff during the construction phase. The entire property would be surrounded by a slit fence. The equipment to separate the stone and sand would recycle its water. Trucks leaving the site would have all mud removed from their wheels and tire treads before exiting on the highway.

Each group section of dirt work would be completed with straw and grass seed planted before starting the next.

The existing runway would remain intact and be used for the July and August spraying operation. One runway would be completed in time for the October cover crop seeding. Crop dusting had to be done from this site to maintain the permit exemptions. The concrete needed 30 days to set before heavy loads could take off or land on it. The crop dusters could use it in 15 days, they were so light.

The construction equipment would start coming in on Monday. Scrapers, excavators, mining dump trucks, the portable concrete plant with Portland storage tanks and separation plant would be set up along with generators to run them.

The plans for the terminal building and main hanger would be rushed to completion. The pads for them would be the first concrete work so building could begin.

Today’s agency training started at noon; I hoped and expected that the airport meeting would be over by then.

There were a few changes in the data – not enough to make any major changes to the final product. We were missing Crash in this session; there were several empty seats on the plane this morning for a flight to the Midwest he had asked if he could go along. He had not objected to anything we had planned for the airport not that it would have made any difference to our plans.

We gave the project a go. There would be sacrifices for a while. There would be no expansion of the security department other than the contracts we had already signed for the rest of this coming year. We would not have the extra money for setup.

Marcy’s auto leasing division would have to stop ordering replacement cars for this physical year. If there were any new sites added the cars we had taken out of service would be put back in service. We had planned to auction all of them and now we needed to keep some.

It would take us six months by Marcy’s numbers for the cash reserve and cash on hand to be back at comfortable levels.

There was a lot of emphasis on recouping cost associated with the flight business. The tie-down charges for the 200s were 5 thousand a month. The airport where they were tied down refused to give any discount on fuel and refused to allow our fuel truck to refuel them. So we were paying a premium price for fuel for them. With an average of three flights a week that was $3300 a flight fuel difference – $10k a week. That alone would make a healthy payment.

We would also save tie-down fees for the other planes and Fixed Base Operator (FBO) fees at Island Airport. Lorrie was going to come up with a complete list of the savings.

Jeanna had not been in the loop since the initial inquiry. She had been at the Midwest main office for high level meetings. I was sure Jenna could give us all the angles.

The agency crew arrived and today I was going to try to help – at least for a while. I made it through the night’s training and then was back to normal on Monday. I went to KCC every day and trained the agency group every night.

The mechanics spent two days working on the Stearman. They had it running on the first day and had done full power run ups. They changed the oil and did odds and ends as time permitted. They were waiting on two new main gear tires before flying it. The ones on there were dry rotted and they refused to risk them blowing out while taking off on them.

On Wednesday, Bob’s Construction installed the necessary equipment so we could get electric hooked up to the deep-water well and the shed Crash used as a hanger, and also the outside security lights. The utility company hooked it up at noon.

Robbie sent me a text for me to stop by the farm on my way home; he had some things he wanted to show me that he had found when they got the lights on. I could also watch the Stearman take off for Island Airport, where they were going to do some upgrades and clean it up.

I arrived in time to see Jack take off in the Stearman. What a beautiful sound the radial engine makes under full power!

Robbie led me to the shed that had been used as a hangar. It also had an addition that was used as a storage area and a shop. The day we had looked at the property, I had stuck my head in there and thought, “What a collection of junk.”

He led me to a corner that was stacked full of large very old military crates that were covered with an old tarp.

“What you are looking at are six 12 cylinder Allison P51 engines. There are also 2 radials that fit the Stearman that came from Dover Airbase when they made the change at the end of WW2 to Airlift Command. Crash knew someone and instead of going to the scrap yard or being sent somewhere else, they ended up here,” he said.

Then Robbie added, “They are brand new, 60 years old but brand new, still cosmoline coated and wrapped for shipping. I asked Crash about them and he said all this stuff is yours. The Allisons are worth 100k a piece.”

“I will tell Marcy about them and let her do the research and decide,” I replied then added, “Thanks Robbie.”

I noticed the farm had a lot of big equipment – construction equipment – parked off to the side already.

Saturday the gym was closed, unless you were a member with a card. It was the 4th of July and we had a big family party and cookout. If anyone noticed the little bulge in Jenny’s belly, no one said anything.

The 4th soon became the 15th – with continuous training between our own security department and the agency, there was no letup. The agency groups had 10 more days and they were off to where ever. We had three more weeks to finish all of the security installations and be ready to handle 12000 students.

Edit by Alfmeister

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