August 13, 2003

The Jet Sat

Well my little summer expedition to B'ham has zipped past, ending with a Grand Finale of a fire in the Charlotte Terminal. The lights went off for a while, and all security check points were frozen, the air conditioning stopped as the place operated on emergency power for at least an hour. The traffic control tower was evacuated so there was nobody minding the store; and you can image that the resulting log jam didn't do anything to make up time lost in the two hour delay I had already experienced leaving B'ham.

Giving a new meaning to the term "jet set", this is just what we did at Charlotte last night. We stalled here and there on the runway for an hour or so waiting in a long line of delayed flights as a fierce thunderstorm came closer and closer, rocking the plane on the ground as it passed over us. When we finally raced down the dark rain-drenched runway with the props churning and roaring, the flight took on the unreal qualities of a B-grade movie. Lightening flashes projected the round shapes of windows in blue light on the cabin walls; I would have sworn there were stage hands outside rocking the fuselage by hand at dramatically important moments determined by the script. And finally, after a nice midnight bottleneck on I-81, it was good slip onto smaller and smaller roads and climb into the hills, and to smell and feel the familiar air of Goose Creek. I swear, I wonder if people don't have some of the salmon's instinct to smell their way back home. The air is just different here, that's all. I have a lot to tell that will mean something only to me, I suppose, and will struggle later with how much to say about what. Trips anywhere generate a lot of words, thoughts, impressions; and trips home the more so.

Meanwhile, I will unpack, sift thru piles of mail on the desk, answer a dozen emails, and get ready for out of town company coming in later today. Thanks for those who have dropped by in my absence (more than I would have expected). I was poorly able to keep up with email or blogs using mom's WebTV and you can't imagine how nice it is to sit down here to a computer customized for JUST ME! Back in the saddle, kiddos! More, perhaps, later... including a few pictures, most likely.

Posted by fred1st at August 13, 2003 06:34 AM | TrackBack

The last aircraft repair that I approved (as a Designated Engineering Representative for the FAA) was for lightning strike. It was a very benign strike. So much so that when the FAA received their copy from us, they called me to be sure that we had truly found all of the damage. We go to great lengths to be sure that lightning strikes are as benign as possible. Glad that you came back all OK.

Posted by: Cop Car at August 13, 2003 07:49 AM

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