Then, because I was sitting beside the mid emergency exit, and in keeping with flight protocol, one of the flight attendants asked me and and the other passengers in that area whether we would be willing to assist in case of an emergency. My imagination heard "in case of an emergency," and as you could very well imagine, I went off on my own flight conjuring up what that emergency might be. The one question that kept getting in the way was whether I would even have the time to be of any help in the event of an emergency. And then an interesting thing occurred as the plane taxied to the take-off position. I had been listening to "Carmina Burana." I noticed that the music seemed to match the taxiing pace of the aircraft, and as the aircraft transitioned into its roll the music began to intensify. As the aircraft picked up speed "Carmina" was right there along with. If you can imagine Tom Cruise maneuvering his F-14B with "Highway to the Danger Zone" playing in the background then you could imagine what I was experiencing. I was on a high. The music powered the aircraft and me down the runway. When it lifted off from the ground, straining at its climbed, Carmina's ending provided a fitting denouement. As the aircraft increasingly gained altitude, "Die Walkure, Act III" picked up from where Carmina had left off, fittingly providing the accompaniment as the aircraft soared to freedom. I was all smiles until I looked out the window and wondered whether there was someone down there with that thing that bees and wasps use. My imagination had taken flight again.
[photo art by Ric Couchman]