Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Not to worry, it's just a little fire in the engine.

Gina, Billie Anne and I left home at the absolutely inhumane hour of 3:30am Sunday to begin our journey to Seattle for the Yarn Market News Smart Business Conference. I am quite sure that whoever planned this conference either (a) didn't notice that it was Daylight Savings Time "spring forward" day, or (b) lives in Seattle so that (a) did not apply to her.

We groggily boarded the first plane for the quick flight to Dallas. The plane goes up, the plane goes down, we're there. No need for a glass of wine or any type of pharmaceuticals for me. I even managed to get a decent start on my new lace project along the way! I silently patted myself on the back as we headed for the next flight.

Note to self: Patting self on the back is often a precursor to disaster.

Twenty minutes into our Seattle flight, we were happily knitting along, blissfully ignorant...

...when the captain came over the p.a. system and said something unintelligible. The p.a. did not appear to be functioning properly. Then suddenly we began a sharp bank to the left. The sharp bank turned into a u-turn, which is always disconcerting to us Oklahomans since they're illegal in our state. Plus, you know, we're 20,000 feet up.

Several of us (self included) nearly tackled a poor flight attendant and asked what was going on. She said a "fire warning light" in the engine had come on, and the captain had decided to return to Dallas. She said they didn't expect anything exciting to happen. Well, I can assure you that the next 20 minutes were the most "exciting" that I've had in some time.

As we landed on the tarmac, we spotted a fire engine speeding toward us. They had to inspect the plane before we could pull all the way to the gate (better for the plane to explode far away from all those people, I guess). Once they announced that we could de-plane, it was the fastest and most orderly de-planing you have ever seen. Back in the airport, when they finally announced that we would not be taking the same plane on to Seattle, a loud cheer erupted from the crowd.

After strongly considering the possibility of just staying in Dallas a few days, doing a little shopping and driving back to Tulsa, I was gently prodded by Gina onto plane #2. After some knitting and some free wine from our male flight attendant, it was all friendly skies again.

We knitters are a resilient bunch. Especially when there's free wine.

Never have I been so happy to land in a new city (this was even better than arriving after the "Code 3" airplane incident of '08, and the "large bird in the engine" incident of '06).

We practically sprinted from our plane to the hotel, and skipped down to the famous Public Market, near the original Starbuck's, where they throw the fish. I captured this fish-throwing shot, but the fish is just a blur. They really fling them fast.

Then we explored the market, which brought to mind a scene from "Pirates of the Carribean." There was a store just for BAG (as we affectionately refer to our dear Billie Anne Grigg):

And there was an entire store devoted to maps - my son Sam loves maps and will be so excited!

There are all sorts of interesting things to see in this city:

So, whatever happened to the plane? I don't know, nor do I care. After something like that, you just want to say a prayer of thanks and high-tail it out of dodge. Later, after things settle down, you may feel a little crabby.

But we're in a beautiful city, learning so much, surrounded by the leading thinkers in our industry and other relevant fields. Plus, there were giant swag bags, which I'll blog on tomorrow.

Onward and upward!

- Shelley
shop online at loopsknitting.com


Blogger cassidy ann said...

So glad you landed safely and are having a good time!

March 16, 2010 at 9:16 AM  
Blogger dorabee said...

I always wondered if knitting needles were allowed on planes. Glad you made it OK.

March 17, 2010 at 4:18 PM  
Blogger QuilterPattiO said...

I don't think I would ever get on a plane you were also getting on. I swear I have never seen any one person with such bad luck and planes then you. I flew for years in business, often across country and have never once had a problem with the plane. There was one time when they couldn't get the cockpit's door locked that delayed us but that was it. Have fun and buy lots of beautiful yarn. PattiO

March 18, 2010 at 5:06 AM  
Blogger Shelley Brander said...

I know, right???? Apparently this is just the way I roll. All I can do is laugh, knit and order a glass of wine.

March 18, 2010 at 5:27 AM  

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