When I first arrived at Sarasota International Airport this afternoon, this was a view. A big 747 sitting there, all decked out in blue & white, labeled United States Of America on the side. There were a few hundred people gathered on the side of the road watching. Technically at this point, you're looking at just another plane. Just another really big plane, though. SRQ isn't a big airport, and most of the little Delta jets that flew out while I was waiting were dwarfed by this big guy.
By the time I took this shot, the plane was officially Air Force One. President Obama had transferred from his Marine One helicopter into this plane. It's only officially designated Air Force One when the President is on board. And take it from me, unless they pulled the old switcheroo while I wasn't looking, Obama was on board this plane. From the time he got on until they began to taxi was less than two minutes. I guess being the President has it's perks.
And once they taxied, they turned and took off. No delays for this bird.
This is the second time I've seen Air Force One. The first time was 1979 when Jimmy Carter was running for re-election against Ronald Reagan. He flew in and out of Lakeland Linder Regional Airport, and my Mom took me out of school to go see him. I've got pictures of that somewhere, I wonder if I can find them...