A C17 plane is like a giant metal whale. Strapped to the inside of one, it's not hard to imagine how Jonah might have felt - the entire contents of his host's stomach in view. It's all there for you to see; pipes, cables, lining, wiring, electronics, engine components, emergency pulleys, winches, ropes... not to mention a small village-worth of cargo - and us, a slightly ragged-looking group of red- and blue-jacketed folk. All-in-all, a slightly surreal and disconcerting environment!
Our flight down was uneventful, though. At one point it looked as though we might not get off the ground, but in the end there was a window in the weather, the go-ahead was given and off we went. And here we are... The pics above show a few unexpected aesthetic pleasures my eye was drawn to on the five hour flight - my small gesture of gratitude to the sombre grey whale for our safe passage down.