A few years ago, my younger sister and I were the first ones down the tunnel to board our flight for Norfolk, Virginia. Just as we were about to board the plane, a mechanic emerged from inside the aircraft and blocked the door with his arms. He turned to the flight attendant and hurriedly stated, "We got problems!"
I thought to myself, "Why did I have to be the one to hear that? Why couldn't I have been at the back of the line? I didn't need to know that!" Very soon we were back in the terminal, waiting, and then ultimately back on the plane. I waited for the pilot to give an explanation. Pilots take courses to ease passengers' mind right? They know what to say to calm nerves.
Unfortunately, I don't think this pilot took that course. Soon his voice boomed throughout the plane, "Sorry for the delay, ladies and gentlemen. We had no power on the plane. We have a generator1 on the ground right now, and we are going to jump-start(启动,发动) the engines. Once we get them going, we will get up in the air and head to Norfolk, and see what happens."
That was it. That was all he said. See what happens? We are going to get up in the air, and see what happens? Couldn't we have another plan, one that's been worked out just a little better?
At this point, all I could do was to laugh nervously2. One woman started yelling, "Oh no! We are going to crash!" There were sighs of desperation and anxiety spreading throughout the cabin like a tidal wave, and we hadn't even taken off yet. Thirty minutes passed and we were still sitting there. Then the voice of the pilot came over the intercom again, "Ladies and gentlemen, I know you are frustrated3—so are we—we know you are hot, we only have one engine going right now, and it is working double time."
There were moan as if