[Journey into the unknown, Part III]
Let me see, last week, my friend Hoade (actually, it's Sean Hoade, but I call him Hoade) and I arrived at the Charlotte Airport, were robbed blind by the cafeteria staff and nearly arrested by fifty-one goverment agents for making a joke about airport security. So that now brings us to the flight to Hickery. So, onto Part III of “My Summer Vacation.”
The flight from Charlotte to Hickery was a real trip (no pun intended, really. And if you beleive that, I have some nice property deep in the Everglades I could sell you …). The plane was one of those you only see in movies from about 1924, the type that look like a cardboard box with wings and props (see photo).
The interior was simple. A row of single seats down the left side of the plane, and a row of double seats (not even large enough to sit two midgits side by side, let alone two full size college students) on the right. We took our seats near the rear, which will become apparent why I mentioned where we sat later on.
Then the steward, Stewart, walked down the isial, taking everyone's (about nine of us, including Stewart and the two pilots) order for the complimentary beverage (did you ever notice that only restauraunts and airlines are the only two companies ever that use the word “beverage?”). When that was done, we started the taxi out to the runway.
“Hello. This is Captain Sigmund, along with co-pilot Freud, wishing you a very happy flight into Hickery aboard this Shorty aircraft 34, flight 013. The weather in Hickery is mild, with low cloud cover and little turbulence on the way. Please fasten your seatbelts, and thank you for your support.” Then we flew off into the wild blue yonder.
Little turbulence turned out to mean that the plane didn't flip over, spilling our drinks on the ceiling. Instead, the plane rode very much like a roller coaster, up and down, up and down, sharp bank turns, straitaways, and over a mile long course (oops! Been watching too many Grand Prix Race-a-rama commercials). I was actually having fun (the way I looked at it: What could I do about the roller coaster affect? Take control of the plane? And then be arrested by 51 goverment agents with loaded .44's pointed at my head for hi-jacking the plane to Hickery, the original destination? I think not. I kept telling myself, “This is going to make one Hell of a column! Either that, or one Hell of a way of dying!”), while Hoade looked like he was going to loose not only the very expensive lunch we had at the airport, but also breakfast (some form of edible foodstuff, much like the stuff one gets at the school cafeteria) and dinner from the night before. But he didn't, and we did manage to hold onto our drinks (leaving me to believe that it is possible to carry a drink onto a roller coaster, contrary to those Fruit Juicer commercials).
I asked the steward, Stewart, why the trip was so rough. He said that Hoade and I got the worse of it because we sat in the back. I didn't believe one word of it, because Sigmund and Freud were looking a bit green themselves.
But soon enough, we landed at Hickery the Ridiculously Small and Obviously Not and International Airport, where the landing lights consisted of several strings of Christmas lights from Sears, and the airport terminal was a used mobile home.
But our luggage arrived with us, incredible as that may seem (it impressed the people at Ripley's Believe it or Not, but they said that such an occurence is just too incredible to believe).
I'm not sure how to end this. You see, today's column was supposed to be end of Part I (I wrote a bunch of columns while I was up north), but it ended up being quite long. Now I still have Part II I wrote (with a funny bit about Celtic Dulcimer Folk Acoustic music tapes) and yet a Part III (yes, six more columns on “My Summer Vacation”), but I'm debating if I should continue, or just stop here. Any suggestions?