I remember being at the 'tail end' of nuggetry in VA-125 and all that was left was night carquals off of Catalina somewheres.
I was parked athwartship (?) right behind the 'Island'. I must have had at least 8 chain tie downs on the plane because it was really rocking and a rolling out that night. This is the truth so help me --- TINS......
Looking up and out just above the canopy cross bar, all I could see was water....in a few moments looking at the same spot all I could see were stars. I told meself.....this is bullshit. If I get in the air I'm heading straight for Lemoore cause I ain't even gonna begin to make a pass at this baby.
I finally got the start sign and the sweep of the hands to undo the chains and the 'come ahead'. I could not release the brakes. After much begging and chewing and the plane was pointed 'downhill' I let'em go and out we came. The tiller guy falls down but in doing so he cocked the nose wheel in the direction I needed and I then got the 'Stop' signal. About now the "Boss" came up and said cancel night ops.
I don't recall ever being so scared. Maybe because it was so new and foreign to me. I've got stories of shut 'em down taxiing up the Bow at night etc but this particular time I did not really care for those 'Golden Leg Spreaders.'