Well, at least the plane’s not on fire!

That’s my new motto. :)

Want to hear the story? Well, I was heading back to Austin from CHA Chicago — finally! — there were thunderstorms and several flight delays and the plane was 2 hours late for takeoff and it looked like it was going to be more. I was so glad to be sitting there, and looking forward to seeing J soon. We were just taxiing along. I was thinking about everything that happened the past week — it was all a huge blur!

All at once I smelled something like burning matches.

It started getting stronger.

I asked the girl sitting next to me if she smelled anything. She said no at first, then she smelled something too.

Next thing we knew the cabin was filling with smoke!

The flight attendants ran around checking the bathrooms to see if anyone had left a cigarette in there, but nope.

So they asked is to keep calm, leave everything, and exit the plane.

I was in the next to the last row and I thought, “well, I’ll either make it off or I won’t” — I really did feel calm. Especially after a whole bunch of fire trucks roared up. (Go Chicago Fire Department!)

I grabbed my wallet and cell phone and made it off okay.


They brought busses to take us from the tarmac back to the terminal. Should have snapped a photo of all the planes we held up on the runway but didn’t think of it.

After that it was a whirlwind of waiting for our carry-on luggage to come off the plane, waiting to see if we could get another flight to Austin (we did, a whole new plane!) and waiting some more. (They had to wait 3 hours to move our checked-in luggage to the new plane.)

In the meantime, something truly magical happened: everyone on the flight became good friends. Really close. We all looked out for each other, and helped each other. What could have been something really bad turned into something really good. I’ll never forget meeting the sailor (it was his second plane ride — he was coming home to get married and then he’s off to Japan for four years) and talking with my seatmate about le Tour de France and knees (what are the odds of meeting a fellow female cycling fan who had knee problems?).

And I made it home to J, yay!

So now you know the story behind my new motto. It really made me stop and think.

And so thankful for how everything turned out.

Hugs to all of you, and it sure is good to be back!

38 Replies to “Well, at least the plane’s not on fire!”

  1. Phew Lisa! But what was it? Guess you’ll never find out. And you are right about something scary, or sad, or exciting bringing people together who would otherwise not have communicated. Its happened to me a couple of times. Bet you were so glad to get through that front door –

    It’s very nice to go trav’lin’
    To Paris, London, and Rome
    It’s oh, so nice to go trav’lin’
    But it’s so much nicer,
    Yes, it’s so much nicer to come home

  2. Whew….so glad that everything ended well…yahoo for making new friends!

  3. that is an amazing outlook! i always say that it could have been so much worse, but this is much better! so glad you all are safe and you are sharing such a positive outlook.

  4. barbara lassiter says:

    I’m thankful you and your plane-mates are safe. I’m sure that was enough excitement to last for a while! Home Sweet Home, indeed!

  5. What a harrowing experience! I love how your positive outlook, allowed you to see something
    good in the experience. I am glad you are okay and home!

  6. i’m embarrassed to admit that had i been in the same situation, i might have panicked — you’re so cool, lisa — i admire you!

    anyhow, i miss you, and i’m glad to hear you happy and well. :)

  7. Oh my goodness Lisa, that sounds like such a scary experience. I’m so glad that everything turned out okay in the end. Hope you’re enjoying a nice relaxing time now after being so busy with CHA and after the episode on the plane.

  8. Sharon D from Canada says:

    Very scary! I’m so glad everyone was safe!

  9. What a blessing that you are safe and sound Lisa!

  10. oh my what a tragic experience! it’s a good thing that you were able to get home safely and no one got hurt

  11. Lisa, I’m glad you had a good time at CHA and I’m glad you made it home safely…what a scare! Good for you to look for the good in the situation…small miracles are all around us, good for you to see it!

  12. wow, Lisa! What an experience! I’m so glad you are okay!

  13. Susan Ringler says:

    Really cute and different! Loved the color combo and I like the idea of the cute little birdie singing JTTW.

  14. Wow, Lisa… I am glad you made it home safe. I must have went home the same day to Houston, because all flights that day were delay for 2-3 hours. I told hubby at least the flight wasn’t cancel. Moment like this does put things in perspective. Glad that you are okay. Hugs.

  15. Love the unusual colors. I too love the solid stamps for embossing. I love how you colored in the scene! Great ideas! TFS!

  16. You’re lucky this didn’t happen while the plane was in the air. The plane would have to land somewhere. That would have been truly time consuming!!

  17. whew! Doncha love firefighters? And this is a fab pic!

  18. Wow! I won’t share that story w/my girls. haha! They are already scared to fly bcuz of 911! Happy to hear all was okay. =)

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