Except for Manny’s anxiety over Selma’s hesitation, the rest of the flight seemed uneventful. His mind kept wandering around and contemplating what the outcome of his premature presumptive and unprotected verbal lunge might be. Her quick parry not being followed by an equal and definite opposing thrust had left him emotionally off balance. He kept remembering his promise to himself at age six to never express an interest in anyone that hadn’t already said they liked him. Manny was once again adrift in self-doubt.
Meanwhile, Capt. Vander Flieg, his flight crew and the Flight attendants were busy getting the travelers and the 767 ready for landing.
From the overhead speakers, the warm, friendly no-nonsense Flight attendant’s voice announces;
“ Trays up and seats forward, folks. Capt. Flieg says he has found the airport and landing strip he’s been looking for. We need to prepare for our final descent into Schipol International. It’s just a short and inexpensive ride from there to Amsterdam, the most beautiful city in the civilized world.”
A long pause for dramatic effect was followed by,
“ Remember to remain in your seats until the seat belt sign goes off and stay out of the aisles until the aircraft has come to a complete stop. At that time you will have plenty of time to remove your belongings from the overhead compartments.”
Incoming flights from all over the world were lining up to get into the landing pattern at one of Europe’s busiest airports. There was no time to be wasted. The twenty second interval spacing between landing aircraft made sure that the passengers would be treated to the smooth and safe landing that the Dutch are known for. Even the squeak, squawk and thump and rush of the tires hitting the runway had all the finesse of a spirited young rental stallion bringing his rider back to his home stable after a long a tiring adventure.
The intercom crackled once again,
“On behalf of the owners, the management, the crew and staff, we hope you all have had as much fun flying with KLM on our trip home as we have had having you on board.”
As Selma and Manny got in line to leave the aircraft and be directed to the baggage claim carrels, neither said anything, but when they got in line to go through customs, Selma said quietly,
“ I forgot to get any of my AAA traveler’s checks cashed. Lets share the costs of the trip into town, OK?”