12 Jan 2017

And Then, The End. Almost...

Feeling greatly good and happy all over and relaxed after a couple of fun filled days and nights ‘convalescing’ in Singapore, it was time to get my sorry ass back to work.  The precise moment the doctor declared me fit was the precise moment the medical insurers, who’s help and support had been excellent throughout my poorly boy period, deleted me from their care and support folded so I was back to running on solo again. Back to getting my own taxies, back to that queueing at passport control an’ all that common people stuff. Shame, as I’d got used to just floating through unhindered.

I finally boarded the direct flight to Balikpapan and soon we were on our way.

Five minutes out from Changi Airport there was a very loud bang from the vicinity of the left engine, the aircraft banked to the left and, I guessed correctly, started its somewhat erratic track back to Changi. Folk were now getting quite agitated whereas I, a world weary, international jet-setting roughneck, slightly hung-over, sat tight and thought, ‘Damn! Have I just gone through all those days of pain and misery just to get totally broken in a broken plane? Damn! Wish I’d stayed out later last night. Damn.’

I’m typing this so you know all ended well and after what again seemed like one year, two months, three weeks, four days and six hours of extreme bump, side to side and up and down flying, we came into an equally  bumpy, swervy landing back at Changi. I looked out the window but this time I didn’t see a limo coming to pick me up but a fire truck and one of they access stairways on a truck pacing along with us.

We stopped and disembarked by the stairs and not, as I’d hoped, by that inflatable, slidey floaty thingy.

Back in a private lounge we were offered assistance of one sort or another. I could relate to this as, upon looking around, there were some seriously shaken-up folk. Eventually, we were told that the aircraft had been declared sick and was thus out of commission and it would be two to four hours before a replacement aircraft would be available for the flight and so please, if we were to leave this lounge, listen out for further updates and information as it became available.

I elected to leave the lounge, having declined any help as non of it involved strong drink, and enquired of the fellow on the door as to what the problem was with the sick bird. He said that early investigations seemed to suggest the aircraft had developed a carburettor stone... Okay, I made that bit up.

You been to Changi Airport? It’s quite some place and all you could wish for is on offer. Myself, being oilfield trash, elected to spend the waiting time at Harry’s Bar.

Four hours later we were called and boarded and had a normal, uneventful flight. After Harry’s, I slept the flight away. I did notice, upon boarding, that of the original seventy odd passengers from the first flight, only roughly thirty thrill seekers bothered boarded the second flight...


So concludes my adventures with a kidney stone since which time I’ve tried never to be more than arms length away from a bottle or glass of water.

Quote;  Captain Rex Kramer

“Flying a plane is no different from riding a bicycle. It's just a lot harder to put baseball cards in the spokes.”


Caratacus said...

Good Grief, Mac ... over the last few days I've read this little series (almost Dickensian - a little bit ata time) becoming more appalled by the minute. I'll never be able, with quite the degree of equanimity I have enjoyed hitherto, to look at anyone holding two tennis balls ever again.

God they bred 'em tough in the old days. And yet here you are, as splendid a refutation of the theory as one may ask, that cosseting the young 'uns is the way forward. As Mrs. Delphine Featherstone was heard to observe in her usual funereal tone the other week on 'Still Open All Hours', "Men thrive on Less".

Mac said...

I must admit to the occasional wince when I watch Wimbledon. Back in the day there seemed to be a never ending number of tunnels to be navigated with very little to no lighting to guide us. Not even a hint of it down to where we assumed the end would be. But, in the majority, we made it through and here we are marvelling at the snowflakery that surrounds us now wondering how they handle adversity. Especially if there isn’t an App for that...
As someone once said, “If the road’s easy, you're likely going the wrong way.”

Caratacus said...

Indeed, Mac.

"Why do you always choose the hard road, Grandad?"
"Why do you assume I can see two roads, Holly Berry?" (My granddaughter whom I love beyond all measure).

Mac said...

Like it.
Life is a journey - go straight on at the crossroad.