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I’m the Boss!

Meloukhia said in her comment from the last post that she’d been in a hijacking among other dramas so that story could make our air rage seem very tame.  However, we’ll soldier on………..

In 2002, we flew to Portland, Oregon to see friends and then onto Chicago where we toured around for 3 weeks in a hire car visiting friends in Toronto and seeing a bit more of Canada.  We returned to Chicago via the Great Lakes and then flew to Buenos Aires via Miami to start our South American trip which included trekking the Inca Trail in Peru.

We took off from Chicago with American Airlines for Miami and then a 2½ hour stopover before catching an AA Boeing 777 to Buenos Aires.  We were seated down near the rear of the plane which was climbing steeply and next minute, a spaced out, tall thin guy, strides down the aisle and spoke to the FA’s who were still strapped in.

We could hear words being spoken and then he stormed back down the aircraft.  We could see a commotion further up the plane, and soon after, the captain announced that we were diverting to Memphis because of an “incident”.

One of the FA’s came back to the rear of the plane and she looked pale and was quite shaken and told us the guy had come down to demand a blanket for him and his mate and was told to return to his seat immediately and they would bring him one when the seat belt signs went off.

He threatened her and ran his finger across his throat before returning to his seat.  For some reason, there happened to be two air marshals on-board who handcuffed both of them to their seats.  When the plane stopped on the tarmac at Memphis, it was surrounded by police cars and the police came on-board, bundled them off, and then took statements.

The captain came out of the cockpit and announced over  the PA that he would never tolerate such behaviour before 11/9 (smile_wink)  let alone now.  He then asked everyone to stay seated and he would takeoff very soon.  A few people then got up and rummaged through the overhead lockers and then this booming voice barrelled down the plane, “What part of ‘stay seated’ did you NOT understand”

The Boss had spoken!

When we pulled up at the Miami gate, we had less than 15 minutes to catch our flight to Buenos Aires and this airport is HUGE.  Of course we got out at gate 1 and had to depart from gate 2875!  We ran like mad and got there as the last passenger was boarding.  The girl at the gate smiled sweetly and said, “We would have waited for you!”

We sat down, wiped the sweat from our brows, and the plane immediately taxied out.  We both looked at each other and said, “Hope the bags make the next flight”.

We optimistically waited at the carousel in the BA airport, and guess what, out came our bags!

How they got them off one plane and to the next in that short time across that huge airport still has us baffled.  In fact, we have never had a bag go missing in all the years of travel.

Is that tempting fate or what?

  1. june in florida
    June 30, 2009 at 2:06 am

    No problem transferring bags in Florida, we strap bags to a gator, point at the next plane and off they go.But i do think you’ve tempted fate.Great story, i think you’ve hit on a hot subject.

    June – You have those Gators well trained. We didn’t see any in the Everglades so they must have all been at the airport. I don’t want to turn it into a aviation blog but it’s certainly fits the theme of Babble.

  2. June 30, 2009 at 2:47 am

    I don’t know what makes people behave like that! Were they high? There are so many stories of people just losing the plot on flights, as story illustrates. It hasn’t happened to me (yet). We are on a flight next week. I sure hope nobody kicks off!

    Good story! I’m glad you didn’t miss your connecting flight!

    Peggy – The guy looked drugged to the eyeballs. Being cloistered inside those metal tubes seems to turn some meek and mild people into homicidal maniacs.

  3. July 1, 2009 at 8:01 am

    When I moved to Maui, back in January ’94, I had three pieces of luggage to check (they didn’t charge extra then). It was a direct flight from SFO to OGG. Pointing at each bag individually, I asked to counter lady to makle sure that one went to London, another to Rio and the third to Sydney. She gave me an astonished stare and responded that that was impossible. I looked her in the eye and said “I don’t see why. The last time I flew with you folks, that where they went.”

    She glared at me in abject disgust. No sense of humor. 😉

    PD – At least you have one!

  4. Scott from Oregon
    July 3, 2009 at 12:54 am

    I got stuck in a six-seater with a novice pilot, a hold full of heavy paint in five gallon buckets, and three, giant, rugby playing house painters who were first time flyers and deathly afraid of crashing…

    Our two hour and a bit flight from Cairns to Weipa took four and a half hours and we ended up barely scraping in to Arakun, three gas tanks empty and running on the last few gallons of the fourth…

  5. Muppet's Mum
    July 4, 2009 at 9:58 pm

    I’ve been waiting for days now. Come on! Hurry up and write a post about your fancy new wheels will you?!?!?

    Nah, boring. Anyway, I’m thinking of chucking the blog

  6. thomashouseman
    July 7, 2009 at 2:28 pm

    Chucking the blog??!! What the!!!


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