Having joined the RAF virtually straight from school my first flying tour experience was unquestionably a key factor in my personal development.
On 50 Squadron I was lucky to experience a round the world trip just 19 months after graduating as a Navigator, introducing me to travel abroad and so many different cultures
My skills as a navigator plotter were continuously tested and there was immense satisfaction in the achievement of very respectable navigational terminal errors after 2000 miles of pure night astro navigation. And who could ever forget their first scramble experience where awesome power was so responsibly controlled? The severity of having responsibility for the conduct of Strike (nuclear) operations was equally matched by a truly rewarding social life.
The diversity of squadron tasking, from compass swings to fighter affiliation, overseas rangers to dining in nights, all exploited skills and loyalties to the full. It was truly great to be a part of the V-Force story!