When I see a plane flying nowadays I sometimes raise my fist and say, Good for you keep flying.
You see, Im mad. I used to be scared of flying. Really scared. You might remember that I finally researched it thoroughly and figured out that it was much more dangerous to drive a car than to fly. (Of course then I was afraid to drive to the airport to catch the plane!)
And while on the flight I took on September 9, I had these strange thoughts of planes taken over by terrorists. I thought there would be four of them. And they would hit at the same time in various parts of the U.S. Well, that last part didnt happen.
But I had to stop myself from pondering on who in the plane I was in might be a terrorist and how they could do something like that to the little children on the flight.
Anyway, I now planned to make a Christmas Eve flight to the west coast. But I had a dream that my plane was crashing and the worst part was hearing all the screaming! But the plane didnt crash and I had a small childs desk in front of me instead of a seat. (You see, I like to interpret my dreams to help me understand some of my reactions so I have pondered what that might mean.)
And because I was mad at being scared, I decided to do something funny. I bought a Santas hat -- a red and white fur stocking cap. And I decided I would wear it on the plane.
A while later I found a message on my answering machine from a relative laughing about a bumper sticker they had seen and they didnt know why they thought of me. But they did. The bumper sticker said something like: I want to die like Grandpa -- peacefully in his sleep -- not screaming like the other passengers in his car! (Sometimes things are funnier when youre hearing it!)
This person did not know of my dream -- of screaming people. But I took their reaction of laughter as similar to my idea of wearing a Santa hat. (And a prayer!)
So as I boarded the second leg of my flight I asked the attendant that since it was Christmas Eve and I was flying to see my grandchildren, could the pilot let me know if he sees Santa and the reindeer flying? But right before taking off we were informed that we might not be able to land at our destination because it was fogged in. But they would try.
Nearing the end of the flight, the attendant wanted to cheer us up so she called a man up to the front of the plane to lead us in some songs as it was a holiday. Of course the one he chose was appropriately Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer! You know, the foggy Christmas night song!
Well, we sang full blast. The attendant held the phone up so the pilots could hear us in the cockpit. (I had heard the lock click on their door when we boarded) and I put on my Santa hat and videoed the passengers. (Of course I also had the thought that any terrorist might be on my film but kept on singing!)
It was still foggy when we tried to land but there was enough of a break to let us down. I was met by my excited jumping grandchildren. While headed for the car, one of the passengers from the plane saw me (I was still wearing that Santa hat!) And came over wearing his L.A. Raiders jacket and said, Ive got to hug you!
So even though I never saw Santa and his reindeer, I saw something else that was wonderful -- the spirit of people.