Saturday, July 01, 2006

TWQ: Plane Stories

TWQ (The Weekend Question) stays on a vacation theme similar to last week, and asks about planes:

Have you got any good plane stories, about what happened to you or to a friend? Did you have an awkward passenger next to you? Was the plane a problem?

Here are my answers:

On my very first plane journey, I went in an old propeller one that had clearly seen better days. It was not a good way to begin. As the plane struggled to take off, the ornaments on the wall fell off as it rattled.

On another instance, a man went on the plane in a wheelchair so that he could be first. When it was time to disembark, he ran right to the front of the queue to get off.

One one journey, a man who sat next to m y father and i picked up all the free newspapers so that he could read them. He read a large newspaper that had the page half over my father's seat. He still wanted to read while we were taxiing to disembark!

Now it's over to you....

But before you go......

For all those in my 'Federation' Frapper Map: Don't forget, you can answer my question set in The Forum: Which Federation Race Would You Like To Be'. Look on the map page to answer this and click the Forum question.

30 comments:

sage said...

Morning, from Michele's. I've had lots of plane experiences, from a pilot who at take off, as soon as he guns it, hits the brakes and we squeal to a stop. At the end of the runway he announces that something didn't sound right. I get stuck in the airport for 6 hours, but it was okay for I later learned that there was a busted seal in one of the engines. Or the time, with -10F temperatures in an prop commuter plane, we set on the runway for 10 minutes, waiting for the plane's (which had sat out overnight)oil pressure to come up. When the pilot announced our reason for sitting, I was wanting to go up and make sure the pressure was okay before take off.

Better Safe Than Sorry said...

first time i ever took a plane was on a holiday with a friend. we didn't know you had to request to sit with each other and found ourselves both sitting beside strangers!

panthergirl said...

I have TONS of great plane stories...a good theme for a blog post.

One of the less fun ones, though, was when the tray table came down to reveal two cockroaches running across it. The flight attendant said, dryly, "If you think that's bad you should see the galley."

UGH!!!

Here via michele!

verniciousknids said...

I also have countless plane stories..but will focus on a positive one: Being upgraded to business class when flying from Tokyo to Bangkok - and again when returning made my holiday even better!

Michele sent me to check in!

Miss Cellania said...

I have tons of plane stories, like when I was 18 years old, and I got set up on a blind date with a pilot from Oklahoma, who flew us from Missouri to Dallas for dinner and drinks.

And the time I spent 36 hours bringing a baby with severe diarrhea home from China.

And the time we did a remote radio broadcast from Disney World and finagled free flights by hook and crook.

But those are LONG stories!

Merlyn Gabriel said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Merlyn Gabriel said...

I have been flying all of my life. Before the age of ten I'd flown across the Atlantic 6 times.

The scariest flight I have ever had was on a small 13 seater from Deer Lake NF to St. Anthony NF in December. When we took off the weather was okay, clear skies Orion was on the starboard wing...but on the way up it was not so wonderful, getting slowly worse as we flew our way up the Northern Penninsula in the dark... by the time we reached St. Anthony it was a full blown Nor' easter blizzard and the little plane was being tossed about like a beach ball on a florida beach at spring break. I knew people thought they were going to die when we all suddenly stopped joking and every one shut and just held on for dear life.
The pilots banked the plane around long and slow because the 70 mile an hour cross winds were buffeting us around too much and we flew out over the half Frozen atlantic. All I could see was blowing snow and ice pans. I knew if we went down in that water we were all dead.Even had we survived a crash the water is too cold.
They tried to land that plane 3 times and each time we got close to the run way the plane would flip almost on its wing so strong were the winds and finally much to everyone's relief they turned around and headed back to Deer Lake. We must have had angels on the wings because three times that plane should have gone down badly and it didn't.

When we landed in Deer Lake everyone cried and cheered and clapped according to their nature and I had never been so glad to touch the ground ever. Next day we did it again but this time the storm was over and we landed in a world of pristine white at minus 25 degrees C. Clear blue skies and no winds.

My father told me some time later that he was at the airport watching the plane try to land and he was certain that we would crash and die. He had never seen anything like it before and when we turned around to head back down the Northern Penninsula he knew that god ( his words) had spared us for what ever reason because everyone on the ground watching that littly tiny plane was certain it would be smashed like match sticks.

I don't like flying at all and I have been in several hairy situations on bigger planes as well, but I know just how much punishment the small single engine or twin engine planes can take.

Oddly enough I am not catholic or even remotely religious but I never get on a plane without my St. Christopher medallion. Call it hedging my bets.

( sorry for the mispost)

kenju said...

Only two; the time were were on an airline called "Rocky Mt. Scareways" (by the locals) and hit an air pocket. The plane dropped dowward about 2 feet and the coke in my class lifted out of the glass and hovered 2' in the air for a second or two.

Other time: on a flight home from LA to RDU, I had an intestinal virus and spent almost the whole flight in the lavatory. Not a pleasant experience for me - or the people who were sitting near the lav.....LOL

Michele sent me.

Tris-Trat said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
tnchick said...

No stories, really. Had good flights. Only once I was on a lay over due to bad weather in TX with my son - who was under two - Not fun.

Sorry I posted above under my son's name. I forget he posted this morning. LOL

Carmi said...

The right-side brakes of our Dash-8 failed with a huge bang as we touched down at Toronto Island Airport. The runway essentially has no runoff: you're in Lake Ontario if you have any problems.

The plane slewed to the side as the pilot fought for control. We ended up off to the side of the runway, and had to be towed to the terminal, where we thankfully got off and waited for a replacement plane.

Four hours later, we boarded, took off for London, then circled for over an hour before coming back because of thunderstorms.

I no longer fly out of Toronto Island.

Neither does Michele.

Superstar said...

Having worked for an airline...I have SOOOOO many good jokes, AHEM I mean stories.

Did you know tat planes can not fly if it's too cold? Yep the engines OIL pressure blah blah blah won't fly. Found that out in Alberta BC. Spent 2 lovely nights in the "holding cell" area for boarding passengers. Once they found out Iwas an employee...I ended up in the back room rebooking passengers. NOT HOW I imagined my vacation ending. I mean after the rollercoster at the mall??? COme on!!!

There was this other time I took my gal pal with me on a "buddy pass" and we planed to bo to Mazetlan (MZT) The plane couldn't land in SEA (Seattle) due to FOG. we landed instead of circling in Yakima, and as an employee I was called apon to get to re book "stranded" I mean delayed Passengers. (OH FYI note your ticket NEVER promised to fly you there...just get you there.) So I am putting people on BUSES, and hearing my crys for a tequilla sunrise, they put me and my buddy on a "deadhead" flight (no not the rock group, but a crew that can fly the plane back to "home" the hanger.) crew and then we had to take a food and beverage truck (if you can call it that) to the terminal, where we RAN to get on a flight to MZT. We get to LAX and no room on the plane for US "freeloaders" to get to MZT so we ended up in Cabo instead. No hotel, no reservations. Just FLYING by the seat of our pants. We get to the airport and THANK god I speak Spanish. I negotiate a ride for a motel in town, and the driver tells us there is no hotel rooms in town due to a soft ball thing...He dumped us a bed and breakfast where 2 americans gave us a room for the night, while they slept in the lawn chairs outside!!! Thank you boys!!! We ended up having the best vacation EVER...Thank god for my ample boosems to help me out that fine week!

BTW YOur blog is DA BOMB baby!

Ciera said...

I have no stories to tell as I've never been on a plane.



YET.

honestyrain said...

we flew 6 months after 9/11 and there were several muslim people on the flight home (from san diego flying into minneapolis). a young man on his own sat watching spiderman on his laptop. he was damned good looking. there was also a family with two small children and one infant. shortly after boarding the father of this family was taken by security to the back of the plane and asked to produce identification. he could not and the entire family was escorted from the plane. the mother, in full muslim attire, ranted that they were the victims of prejudice.

i have to say that i could have very easily felt prejudice toward these people. i was on the plane with my husband and then 15 month old son. i was afraid to fly. i was irrational about not wanting to crash at the hands of some crazy person, if such a thing can be deemed irrational. but i did not feel prejudice toward these people. i felt admittedly mild concern on seeing them but i did not allow my feelings to go beyond this.

i think that there was likely good reason for the family to be taken from the plane. i don't in any way think that the air marshals were acting on fear or prejudice. were that the case, the other muslim people would have also been removed from the plane. my good looking spiderman watching young man would have been carted away as well. he was not and nor were the other people of muslim appearance.

the thing was, some people said they must be harmless because they were an entire family. with small children. with an infant who could not have been more than a week old. it is incredibly sad that we all came to realize that having kids and babies along was not reason to think they were harmless. rather, the children made for a good disguise as 'safe happy family'.

i've babbled on and on. sorry. but that's my most interesting flight.

here via michele.

nettie said...

Well, my trip back from Italy was really nice. We had the individual screens so you could pick what movies you watched. I think mine were Harry Potter, and James Bond, and Chicago. Much better than the way over where it was one big screen and they kept showing cooking shows.

Melody Lam said...

Here are some good (or bad) plane stories:

Watching Star Trek First Contact on the big screen on a plane! Most people had fallen asleep by then, but I enjoyed it. (my siblings and my mom included)(this was way before individual screens, and it was on a flight from LA to Hong Kong)

I was recently on a flight in 2005 and going from LA to Hong Kong again. Of course, what could happen does happen.
First the pilot said that they might stop in Taiwan for a refuel. Later in the flight (about halfway across the pacific) they tell us that they won't refuel, but go all the way. It sorta worried me. Nasty headwind too.
Then the turblence starts.
It got so bad that before breakfast, the flight attendants started handing out airsickness bags out like candy! Most people couldn't hold down breakfast anyway (I could, though, since I had some orange juice and I was incrediblely resistant to the effects). Apparently (after reading about it in the newspapers) there was a typhoon that was hitting Japan and we had just flown over it.

Seeing all of LA from a plane. It's pretty in the twillight.

I know it's sorta a promotion, but if you're flying to anywhere in SE Asia, Cathay Pacific is a good bet. They have really good food, and they'll get you anything between meals-including ice cream, ramen, and playing cards.

Blond Girl said...

My very first flight was to Arizona when I was 14 and I travelled alone. While I was there, my sister gave me new glasses, a haircut, my first pair of high heels and a low-cut dress. The steward offered me a complimentary glass of champagne and nearly dropped his teeth when I confessed my age! In fact, when the plane landed, I walked right past my mom, who didn't recognize me! As soon as we got home, my mom called my sister and raged at her for a half hour about how mad she was that she had sent a little girl to Arizone and my sister sent home a woman! 26 years later and I'm still laughing!

Oh, and I put up a new post just for you, Mr. Dejavu! Nightynight. :-)

Jean-Luc Picard said...

What a rich array of plane stories you have! It seems no one has a normal flight.

srp said...

We lived in a small town. Had to take the little puddle hoppers to Atlanta or Memphis. On one trip to Chicago our ride was late and I had the times mixed up and as we drove up to the little terminal, the plane was taxiing away. We begged and pleaded with the counter. Finally, they ran over to the control tower (i told you it was small) and the plane came back for us. We thanked the pilot profusely when we got on. The poor little flight attendant was new and had to give us the instructions she had already given the others. She forgot half way through about what to say for the seat belt. Nyssa gently reminded her.... she was seven. Of course that would never happen today.
Here from Michele.

Nikki-ann said...

I don't really have many plane stories, other than I was fine with landing until I took a flight into Toronto. The plane was shuddering and you couldn't see a thing through the windows due to thick fog. When we finally landed the pilot got a big round of applause from everybody on the plane!

Here from Michele's :)

Viamarie said...

I too have many plane stories but my most memorable one was 10 years ago. My daughter and I had to be in a particular place at a prescribed time and we could not book ourselves on the first available jet plane so we were forced to take a 10 seater plane. Flight was alright until when we were about to land and the landing gear did not function. The pilot had to circle around the air for around 30 minutes so as to consume the gas because we were going to glide down the landing field. As soon as we started to descend, fire trucks started to come just in case the plane hits ground with an explosion. I started to pray out loud and called all the saints I can remember to help us. We landed safely but because I was in shock, I wasn't able to stand up from my seat for another 30 minutes. Since that time, I never attempted to take any chartered flights because they usually use smaller planes.

rashbre said...

I've had a few. The most difficult was when an engine caught fire on a large jet that I was in flying back from Saudi Arabia. We had to fly over the desert, jettison most of the fuel and then do an emergency landing on one engine at Riyadh.

The crew instructed every passenger individually regarding brace position and wore special orange unifirms. During the descent they continually called out 'Brace' in turn from their stations.

After the screeming decsent and landing with brakes, bursting tyres, rubber sound and so forth, the pilot did a lap of honour of the passenger area.

I think this was a tough one.

Terri said...

Hi..from Michele's.
I also have a million aircraft stories (My husband is retired Continental)
But one of the first was....in 1974, on our honeymoon to Bermuda, we were flying the Eastern Whisperjet out of Kennedy...no sooner got airborne and the tower notified the pilot it looked like the landing gear was still down. Had to circle over the Hudson dropping fuel....an hour later, with me terrifed, we came back to land, still not certain if the gear was up or down. Crash crews were waiting, etc. but it wasn't locked and we landed safely. I SWORE I'd never fly again...since then, I've been around the world. So glad I got over my fear immediately and got on another flight.

rashbre said...

This time I'm here via Michele's. Another story is my occasional flights to and frm Manchester, England. A sort hop from LHR, one would think, but I am sort of jixed on that route. A few examples:

- faulty undercarriage wouldnt retract after take off. 90 minutes of circuling and then a re-landing at Heathrow.
- a sick passenger after we'd taxied out at LHR, we had to go back to the gate and get an ambulance to exit the passenger.
- A near miss landing at LHR on the way back. We were on final approach when the engines suddenly started to go rather loud. We were going to abort the landing becasue another plane had not cleared the runway.

I'm pretty good at going to sleep on planes, you can see why.

rashbre

rashbre said...

Excuse all my typos in the previous post. I am using an alien keyboard (from planet Zarg, actually).

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Carmi said...

On second thought....

I once sat next to a woman who insisted on being granted the right to smoke. She kept whining about it - even as we sat motionless on the tarmac for hours because of a severe lightning storm - and other passengers were getting upset.

I finally leaned over to her and in my most calm voice near-threatened her unless she shut up now. She sat silent for the rest of the time we were on that plane. Damn funny....she's probably never forgotten me.

FaulknA said...

It was my first time in the air. I'd hitched a ride with a guy I'd met at the bar who was a crop duster pilot and had his own plane. He asked me if I wanted to fly with him and I said yes. This was after observing him down 4 or 5 beers at the bar. After seeing his plane I almost backed out but I figured he hadn't gotten as old as he was by screwing up so I went. I almost wet my pants when he hit the top of some cottonwood trees at the end of the field he was spraying. There were still some branches caught in his wheels when we landed

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