I still do not understand the lure of travelling by air. I prefer going by road anywhere, even if it will take weeks. And occasionally, sadly, I am proven right. However, I will not entrust my life to a pilot I might not even see till the flight is over. I am a fan of seeing whoever I’m handing my life to. Isn’t that logical? Alright, I know you’ll say he’s qualified, but I still need to see him, look into his eyes to be absolutely sure. That is why when I’m faced with travel by road, I chat up the driver before entering the vehicle.
So why then will you enter a plane, without as much as a hello from the pilot, except when he greets you from the speakers? How are you even sure it’s not a recorded message played over and over again?
Before I place my life in a huge metallic machine flying thousands of metres above the ground, I would like some assurances.
First, a tête-à-tête with the pilot… Not just a hello, no sir… A full discussion. Has he had any alcohol in the last decade? Does he believe in life after death? Was he abused as a child? Is he married with kids? These are very relevant questions, because when that plane is flying over Oklahoma – where I don’t even know anyone – I want to be sure he won’t suddenly remember being flogged as a child.
Secondly, I want to understand how it stays up there. The plane, I mean. Because I don’t see anything holding it up, and gravity is being flagrantly ignored or disobeyed. I would like a full explanation, with schematics and calculations, explaining why it can and will safely stay up, until I get to my destination.
Thirdly, I would like to know my chances of survival. If anything goes wrong, is there any hope I can make it? Any chance at all? Or are you saying if anything goes wrong, I will surely turn up as manure in a Ukrainian field? Is there no sort of assurance at all that I could kind of make it?
After exhaustively examining these three points, I will still prefer to either go by road or sea. I leave the air travel to the rest of you.
PS: My heart goes out to the children who lost their lives in Yobe, Nigeria, and my condolences to the family of Dr. Myles Munroe.
Written by Chika Jones, tweets at @chika_jones