I don’t have a fear of flying. I have a fear of doing anything else at 30,000 feet.
Yesterday I was on a flight out of Seattle. The man in the seat next to me kept staring out the window at the propeller. Now, I don’t know anything about planes, and frankly, I try not to think about what’s holding them up in the air. (My best guess is magic.) But he’d already mentioned that his last job was with [insert name of famous jet engine manufacturer] so I couldn’t help asking.
Me: Is everything okay?
Him: I’ve never actually flown on one of these planes before. If that thing goes [chin jerk toward propeller right outside my window] our only chance—and it’s not a very good one—is if it heads the other way.
Him: Yeah, my job at [aforementioned jet engine manufacturer] was to make sure all those nuts and bolts stay in the engine case where they belong. It’s not as easy as it sounds.
Him: Remember the time the bolts came off and the propeller took out the top of that plane and the pilot managed to land? He saved a lot of lives, but of course the passengers next to the propeller were all killed. They didn’t even find all the bits of them.
Me: I didn’t remember that, but I can guarantee that I’ll be giving it some thought the rest of this trip. So… wonder if any of our fellow passengers have been exposed to Ebola lately?
Him: [goes back to staring at the propeller.]
So let’s review:
What’s the strangest thing that’s ever happened to you on a plane?
Very amusing post, Barb. I don’t love flying either.
Judith Barrow said:
Hilarious – good response!!
I’d have had a heart attack! You are brave.
I am just about to board a plane. Hoping not to get the scary clown with the pointy teeth, sat next to me!
I went on a plane with a friend who was going to Arizona for cancer treatment. She was terrified of flying. Out just did happened that the guy seated across from us was a pilot. By the time we’d landed, she was laughing. We scared her a little first with completely insane scenarios and then took that you those scenarios in everyday life. (She did stop eating chocolate bars with nuts in them after we advised that it was more likely that those nuts were cockroaches than almonds.) She got through the flight, but I’m not sure if we scared her for life in doing it. Thank goodness that plane didn’t have any propellers. No telling how badly we would have scarred her for life. 😉
Julia Gibbs said:
I sat next to a guy who used to work for Boeing, on a flight from Orlando to La Guardia. He was really interesting, actually, telling me all about how safe Boeing was, and how to minimise your risk in the event of emergency. I’ve sometimes had to take propeller plans on internal flights in Germany, Spain and France, and I don’t like them one teeny bit!