Monday, April 23, 2012

Red Eye flight interrupted

LOS ANGELES >> An American Airlines flight from Hawaii has landed safely on one engine at Los Angeles International Airport after the pilot reported engine trouble.

This story, from today's Honolulu Star Adveertiser reminded me of the time that one of our American Airlines flights from Honolulu to Philadelphia, via Dallas, had a problem. The pilot of this red eye flight woke everyone up with the announcement that we were about 160 miles east of San Francisco but had to turn around and go back to San Fran airport so that "something" on the plane could be fixed and, the pilot assured us, that this airport was the only place that the "something" could be fixed.

As we approached the airport, the pilot announced that "all the precautions that you see when we land are perfectly normal." We looked and saw a fire engine and an ambulance parked, at the gate, on each side of the plane. Oh sure. Perfectly normal.

We all deplaned, waited for a couple of hours in the airport, talked and complained among ourselves, and, after being told that the plane could not be fixed as rapidly as expected and so, we were all being put on another plane for the trip to Dallas.

This plane must have been dragged out of mothballs. But it worked. Forget about assigned seats. It was first on the plane, first served. But no one hurried. Everybody was too tired. And, good news, as is obvious, the plane landed in Dallas OK and, although our scheduled flight to Philadelphia took off hours before we got to Texas, we were put on another flight and arrived home just fine.

There's more to this story. These events took place about a month after 9/11 and I was sure that our plane was being forced down by military jets because of a terrorism threat. I'm happy to say that I was wrong.

Monday, April 16, 2012


Sew goodWorking with a needle and thread is regaining favor as a valued skill By Nancy Arcayna POSTED: 01:30 a.m. HST, Apr 16, 2012
Sewing was once a required skill for females, passed from mother to daughter or taught in home ec classes and by 4-H clubs in the days when store-bought clothes were a luxury.

This appeared in today's Honolulu Star Advertiser and reminded me of a momentous occasion in the sewing lives of my mother and one of my daughters.My daughter came home from school, with a pattern for a blouse and instructions on things she had to buy to make this blouse.

First things first, I know almost nothing about sewing. If forced, I can sew on a button, or put up a hem, but I am useless when it comes to cutting out patterns or (horrors) using a sewing machine. But, my mother learned extensive sewing skills when she was a teenager and apprenticed to a seamstress in her small upstate New York town. My mother took one look at the pattern, said that this was not appropriate for a novice sewer, and my daughter should make another choice. My daughter insisted that the teacher said that anything from this book was OK and she was adamant - this was what she wanted to make.

"But it's cut on the bias," my mother said. And looked to me for help. I had no idea and backed out of the room. So, time passes. My daughter acquired all the materials necessary for this blouse - in yellow - and we heard nothing more about the project until the day before it was due.

"I had to sneak all this home," she said and then asked my mother for help. My mother threw her hands up, took one look at the progress, and got to work.

The next morning, the blouse was finished, and beautiful. She was up all night. My mother ripped out every stitch that my daughter made and resewed the blouse so meticulously that, without a sewing machine, the seams looked as if they were completed on the machine.

By the way, my daughter wore the blouse to school and got an A for the project. Fortunately, my mother also passed the course.

Monday, April 9, 2012

Phillies Opening Home Game

This past weekend was not a happy one for Philadelphia sports' fans. And, if the Eagles were playing, it would have been a four for four weekend - all losing. The Phillies reminded me of the old time Phillies when my young children would ask, in the morning, "how did those dummy Phillies do?" In the late 60's, they thought that "those dummy Phillies" was their name. It could have been. And it could be again. Fielding is slightly better than atrocious and hitting is missing. It's going to be a long summer.

I remember, a long time ago, when my mother, who was a National League fan insisted that my father take us to an American League game. The Athletics were still in Philadelphia and playing the New York Yankees. My mother's favorite player was Joe Dimaggio and she said that she wanted to be sure that I got to see a "real" baseball player. That's all I remember of that experience.

Edgar's cousin Herbert took him to an Athletics game and Herbert caught a home run ball, hit by Indian Bob Johnson - right to him in the Left field bleachers at Shibe Park.

One of Edgar's business acquaintances owned a small part of the Philadelphia Phillies. Jack Cherry was a sport in the real definition of the term. Anybody who came near him received a tip - parking lot attendants, policemen, and all the vendors. He had a box right over the Phillies dugout at Veterans' Stadium. He supplied us with programs, pennants, as much food as we could eat, and loud earfuls of cheers - both positive and negative. He had a VERY large vocabulary.

We took our children to several Phillies games. The youngest was 6 or 7 years old and was play-mocking the fanatic and then said, "is he looking at me?" This was during the second inning because after an ice cream, a pizza, some french fries, a soda, and a program, this child was ready to go home.

Back to today's home opener. The pageantry at the beginning captured the imagination and hopes of the fans. The team walked in from center field to the dugout and then, upon individual introductions, ran out onto the field. What a great beginning! If only the game had ended then. It's much too early to say "just wait until next year," or is it?