June 30 2003.
I had booked to fly Melbourne to Sydney at 11.00am for an urgent visit. The Dep time of 1.15pm was the earliest I could get (I tried Qantas too, but the earliest was 1.35pm) and I checked in at 12.45pm. All was OK at this point.
Boarding was scheduled at about 12.55. Had a smoke outside. Switched the mobile phone off and proceeded to the departure lounge (ex Ansett). All was OK at this point too.
12.55 : This is where the fun begins.
Announcement on the PA advises that a/c is late and departure is not until 1.50pm. Not too happy but I made appointment in Sydney for 3.30pm. (just in case)
1.50pm and second announcement; Boarding for flight very shortly. New Dep time of 2.05pm. Very unhappy now.
2.05pm and we have boarded and awaiting push back. Feeling that all the delays are history, I sat down, buckled up and enjoyed the eye candy. I swear that all f/a were bottle blondes but heck they all have good shape and their faces are all on the correct end of the good looking scale.
The even talk to you about nothing. Not just 'On your right' and 'please fasten your seatbelt' etc.
2.10pm and the door is stiil not closed and armed. What is going on?
Pretty f/a #1 walks my way, asks gent in isle seat in my row if she can have a word with him; at the front of the a/c. He obliges but before he goes she also asks him to take his hand luggage with him. He starts asking why, she is reluctant to answer but eventually admits that he is a standby ticket and the fight was overbooked. He leaves. Same happens to lady a few rows back.
2.20 still on the ground. New announcement requesting for volunteers to give up their seats, five required. Pretty f/a #2 from the rear of a/c has no show of hands. Nor is there any show of hands from the front.
2.25 another announcement. Five volunteers to give up seats will receive a fully paid return flight Mel-Syd plus some other tokens or vouchers. Only condition was that volunteers must not have any checked luggage on this flight.(I am out of the race) Low and behold there is a show of about 80 hands. I think that many volunteers put both hands up.
2.30pm all five volunteers now off the plane. In come the seven pax (part of a group booking I found out from f/a #1 during flight)
2.40pm a/c begins push back. I cannot believe it, we are actually moving. Even if it is backwards, we are moving!
2.45pm we finally get off the ground.
The rest of the flight was as per normal, except for the great yak I had with f/a #1. She made me forget all about why I was on the flight in the first place.
3.40pm we touchdown. At last.
4.00pm and I am in the rental car and on my way. Only a couple of hours late. But that is another story.
Isn't it amazing how quickly we (pax) can be bought?
Hope you enjoyed the report. Would appreciate any comments.