Not all old airliners end up being broken down for parts. Some get a reprieve, at least for a while. A frequent secondary use for airliners is freighters and FedEx have an extensive fleet of old DC-10s that they use. These have gone through a cockpit upgrade program and have been renamed MD-10. However, even that is not enough to keep them going indefinitely and the fleet is gradually being reduced. One of them has got a new lease on life though.
Orbis is a charity that carries out eye surgery around the world in places where the medical facilities are limited. Cataract surgery is a simple procedure in some countries but a rarity in others yet it is a simple solution to a problem that affects thousands of people. Over the years they have had a number of airliners that are fitted out with an operating theater and they can fly into locations and carry out surgery on people who would otherwise have little hope of regaining normal sight. The current aircraft (see at the bottom) was a DC10-10 that had originally been with United. That aircraft is now being replaced with the MD-10 from FedEx.
I first saw the aircraft at LAX during its press roll out. I was landing and looked out of the window and there it was on the ramp. No camera to hand so just a memory. More recently, it spent some time at Moffett Field and I was able to grab a few shots. It was hot so, while I chose the better side for the light, it meant being a distance away and getting a fair bit of heat haze. I did also see the shady side through the fence. I imagine the jet is now off doing good work around the world. A great cause.
Our trip to Woodstock included poking our heads into the Opera House on the square. An old building that has history dating back to the early days of the town, we were nosing around the front door when a passing lady told us to head inside. I was not going to bother but she was quite insistent so we did head in. One of the staff was in the lobby and greeted us warmly. He suggested that we should wander around upstairs if we wanted.
We headed up to the auditorium. It was great. A small venue so everyone was very close to the stage. It seemed really cozy. There was a balcony too so we checked that out as well. They have a variety of acts throughout the year so the place seems very busy. They had a musical on that evening but they also had music acts performing at varying times.
The restoration of the place was nicely done and it was in great condition but also felt suitable period. While Woodstock is not a big town , it does appear that you could keep yourself entertained with the the various acts coming through on a regular basis. Not only that but the friendliness with which we were greeted by everyone really made you glad to have made the trip.
One last picture of something interesting. Some of the original seats are on display in the lobby by the box office. Not a comfy as the present seats, perhaps, but they do have a feature that few seats have today. Under the seat is a wire frame in which a gentleman can slot his wide brimmed hat during the performance. Probably a common feature in years gone by but certainly a novelty now.