Two Tales of Dreadful Flights

May 22, 2017

in Odds & Ends Stories

I’m a frequent flier but my family is new to this, even though they are becoming more “frequent.” I’ll share a couple of stories, even though they probably don’t rate anywhere the seriousness of most of these posts.

First story…

In 1995 I flew from Hong Kong to Manila to visit my sister. I checked in early and was told by the gate agent that there was an earlier flight available. Would I like to be on it? Sure! Why not?

So I flew on the earlier flight. Two problems. First, my bags were already booked on the earlier flight and preceded me. Second, my “earlier” flight got delayed for mechanical reasons; we left much later than my original flight.

Just as we were about to land, we accelerated again and the pilot came on the air to tell us that there was some sort of obstruction on the runway. He told us, “Don’t worry, we have a half hour of fuel.” About 15 minutes of circling the airport, he gets back on the speaker and announces that there is not enough time to land in Manila so we are diverting to Cebu City for a refuel, a half hour away. So I did the math and realized that either he lied about how much fuel we had, or we are going to land in Cebu on fumes.

Fortunately, we made it. When we finally got to Manila, my bags were in detention, so I ended up sleeping in the airport until they were available.

Second story…

My dad and I decided to take a big adventurous trip to South Asia in 1997 including Korea, Thailand, Burma, Bangladesh, and Nepal. Our flight out of Dhaka to Kathmandu was, to say the least… interesting.

Immediately upon sitting down in our seats on Biman Airlines we realized that our seat belts were broken. The Fokker plane then took off with condensation leaking on us from the ceiling, and a large section of the bulkhead collapsed onto the floor, while warbly Indian music blasted us. About 90 seconds into the flight, the pilot overcorrected a turn and all of us became armchair pilots, wondering what he did and why.

We did arrive, but all of us were counting our blessings.

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

SLM June 22, 2017 at 4:32 pm

I don't know if I could ever get on a plane after experiences like that!

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