The Value of Good Humour

Twenty-odd years ago, a school friend and I were on one of the last flights to leave a Caribbean island for the USA before a major hurricane was due.  The pilot of that American Airlines flight had a very relaxed and reassuring manner over the intercom and even dipped a wingtip to improve the view during one those “we are just passing…” parts of the speech.  He brought some much appreciated levity to a rather tense crowd.

That pilot came to mind this evening while waiting to depart on the SK506 to Copenhagen.  It was a full flight and with schedules at Heathrow being notoriously tight, I imagine the captain was keen to get boarding completed in good time.

After making the customary welcome announcement in Danish first, his switch to English opened with: “Ladies and gentlemen.  There may be fifty ways to leave your lover but there are only eight to leave this aircraft.”  After which he exhorted us to pay full attention to the safety demonstration that was soon to follow.

The English version of the pre-landing speech started with: “Ladies and gentlemen.  What happened in London stays in London and here comes Copenhagen.”  We landed ten minutes ahead of schedule.

Our captain for the evening was Mikael Kirkensgaard.  As I had just read in the inflight magazine about a different SAS captain who had been a decorated competitive skater, I asked Captain Kirkensgaard what he did when not flying.  He is not a stand-up in his spare time but a football coach.  He is also rather handy at the controls of an Airbus A320.  I hope we might fly together again.

SAS Captain Mikael Kirkensgaard

Unfortunately the smile waned somewhat shortly after landing.  The flight to Billund has been cancelled and a three hour bus journey awaits.  I wonder what the driver’s sense of humour will be like.

Heathrow hat-trick

Friday night I landed at Terminal 5; last night I waved farewell to my family at Terminal 4; tonight I am flying out of Terminal 2.  Three nights on the trot at Heathrow Airport.  Perhaps I should buy shares in the business.

As I have to wait a few minutes for the gate number to be announced I am taking the opportunity to scribble a few words while sipping a cold drink: on this occasion a pint of Fuller’s Sticky Wicket which I have never seen anywhere before and is apparently a seasonal special.  Quite a pleasant ale it is too if perhaps a little sticky by flavour as well as by name.

“Go to gate” the screen suddenly declares.  Bye for now.

I’m on the bus…

…and I’m online.  So I am writing a quick post simply because I can.   No doubt I am showing my age here…

The bus in question is a recently introduced service to Billlund Airport that has replaced the one I used to take.  Hardware upgrades make it similar to an aeroplane (lights and air vents per seat for example) but with huge windows and one of those large tables with four seats facing it; which is where I am sitting now.

There are two other people on the bus, one of whom is the driver.  As the other chap is sitting very quietly at the back I can almost pretend this is my private conveyance.

DKK 80.00 for the bus ticket versus around DKK 1000.00 for a metered taxi.  When the schedules align, no contest.