I have never blogged about this because my close call doesn’t seem close enough to be a close call. But just today another online article was posted about Flight 1549 that crashed into the Hudson River in New York City last January. It will not leave me alone, so I’m going to blog about it and get it off my chest.
That was my flight.
No, I was not supposed to be on it that day. No, I had not been on it the day before. I was not supposed to be on it the following day. I was supposed to be on it in two weeks.
Two weeks after the crash, I flew to New York to see my BFF from high school, attend a writers’ conference, and meet Editor Mike. My flight back was supposed to be Flight 1549 from LaGuardia to Charlotte; in Charlotte I would pick up my return flight to Birmingham.
On the day of the crash, I was watching the news reports when my husband called from the road. He’d heard about the crash on the radio in his car and wanted me to tell him more about it. He really empathized with the victims because he flies so often from Birmingham to Charlotte and from Charlotte all over the country. He wanted to make sure the passengers were okay.
In the back of my mind I was thinking...Charlotte? LaGuardia to Charlotte? Naaah... And then when I logged onto my computer, I had an e-mail from U.S. Air: “Your Flight 1549 in two weeks has been changed to Flight 1548.” Translation: “We are sorry but your airplane is floating in the Hudson.”
Everyone I’ve told about this story has laughed with me about it. My BFF said the airplane floated right past her office in the Garment District. If I had been on it, she would have waited for me to be rescued and met me at the ferry with a latte. In addition to the two-weeks-out scenario, it’s easy to laugh about because no one was killed. The folks unlucky enough to have been on this flight were as lucky as possible.
I would not let this or the French crash stop me from flying. They say it’s safer than driving and I absolutely believe it. Still, I have to say, I was very nervous flying home. I was on the lookout for birds. And all around me, the other passengers seemed unconcerned. “What is the problem? We are on Flight 1548!”
Surely you have a better brush-with-death story than this. What’s your close call?