I did excellent work the past hour and fifteen minutes “working” one of the emergency exit doors on my flight from Clevelend to Charlotte, if I may say so myself.
My exit door, I am pleased to report, was “without incident.” And this is the third time this year I have taken on the responsibility of manning the emergency exit door in the event of an accident or emergency landing.
And it is not a role for the faint of heart.
Why do I compliment myself? Because frankly I have found it to be a thankless job. Not once has a member of the flight crew thanked me for my able, focused and fastidious work in this flight leadership role. Not even an “atta boy” wink or appreciative thumbs up gesture.
Should I need the affirmation to take on this kind of role? Probably not. And as long as I can give myself the occasional Facebook shout out for my aviation safety, that ought to be enough.
And even though you probably weren’t on any of the three flights with me when I was in this important role, just know that if you had been, you would have landed safely and soundly. Thanks to the work of the crew and their volunteer staff, including me.
And although this isn’t a nice thing to say, the person opposite me working the other emergency exit, in my opinion, didn’t have her heart in it and hadn’t really read the flight rules and protocols and lied to the flight attendent when she pretended she had. At times I felt like I was doing her job as well as mine! As far as her side of the plane went, let’s just say we got lucky tonight.
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