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ODDS & ENDS
Terror At 33,000 Feet
Plunged Into Darkness.

by Red Cooper
May 13, 2003

Terror At 33,000 Feet_Red Cooper-Plunged Into Darkness. One of my favorite things to do when travelling is observe the people I'm flying with. Some just sit still for the whole flight while others just walk around with no particular place to go.

I'm pretty much a sitter. There comes a time of course when one has to use the facilities. A most popular place to go. As with everything else there is usually a line of people waiting. Usually the same people the whole flight.

At one point I felt the need to go and luckily there was only one other person waiting. While I waited my turn a little boy about 4 came over expecting to open the door and go inside. It was occupied.

I could tell by his mannerisms that there was a sense of urgency. He returned to his father not far away and told him of his dilemma. His father insisted that he wait. Easy for him to say.

Finally the door opened and he came over to which I told him to go ahead. He went inside and closed the door. A few seconds later he started crying out and banging on the door. His cries turned into screaming as his father came to his rescue just as the door opened.

He didn't know how to turn on the light.

I tried to put myself in his place thinking the terror he must have felt plunged into darkness.
How much he had waited for the moment with nervous anticipation and finally gaining access only to find yet another problem.

Without so much thinking involved he called out in terror for the only one who could save him. His father. The one who was always there. The one he depended on.

Later, as I was sitting once again in my seat, I looked over to see the little boy with his head on his dad's lap, sleeping.

All was right again with the world.

Sometimes it seems my own father pops up in my mind for the times he was there for me
and it seems to happen in the most unusual ways.

I wonder if that little boy will one day think back to that flight and the time he was plunged into darkness and then rescued.

I should think so. I know I'll not soon forget.


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