I’m a people watcher. Are you?
I had a wonderful occasion to watch people … all strangers … over the last 24 hours. About 175 people arrived at Maui’s airport to fly back to the mainland. Dallas was our destination – about a seven hour flight, give or take, depending on the jet stream. From Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport, we would fan out from there – one guy to Brazil, one lovely lady to New York’s Hudson’s valley, another guy to St. Louis, a couple to Florida. Me? Back to Richmond, Virginia.
American Airlines is a great airline. I love their reach. British Air, Quantas, and Cathay Airlines are a few of their partners. American fits most of my world travels.
Last night our AA 767 had mechanical problems, so we had to deplane and wait for repairs. It turned out that our plane needed a part, and that the repairs couldn’t be done until today. American put us up in a really nice hotel, The Grand Wailea, and gave us a food voucher. The other passengers and myself didn’t get to enjoy all the fantastic amenities of this “Five Diamond” hotel, but we did get a decent rest.
Up at 3:15 AM, on the bus by 4, and back to the airport at 4:40. Whew!
It’s now 11:15 AM, and we’re still not on the plane. The repair part the mechanics needed and ordered for American Flight 6 came in, sort of. Turns out whoever does the part-sending-out sent the wrong one. Hmm.
But I gotta tell you, if you’re going to be delayed … and delays happen … you will want to have a similar experience to mine. American employees (from the pilots and flight attendants to the mechanics) at Maui’s airport are the best, and they have gate and ticket agents you’ve only imagined in your dreams. Every one is full of ALOHA! Each person waiting on us has been so sweet. And nice. (You can’t teach the kind of “nice and sweet” we experienced, and you certainly can’t put it in a policy manual.)
I’m not sure when we’ll get off the ground, but being safe is better than being on time, right?
And if you’re going to be delayed at an airport, wouldn’t it be great if everyone you had to work with was sweet and nice?
Another mind-blowing observation I made today is … surprise … how nice MOST of the passengers have been. Oh, there’s a few boneheads who have complained about anything/everything, maybe because of brain damage or a shallow gene pool. Whatever. Why make it tough on the people around you, or the children with you?
Anyway, back to “the MOST.” Former strangers have chatted, shared stories, and been downright friendly. Smiles were the rule, not the exception. I watched one family do homework together, the dad quizzing his kids on math and English while the mom sat close by, smiling and encouraging.
Human beings, when tested, can show such cool and admirable qualities. True character comes to the surface when put to the fire.
How’s your day?
Think about it.