25 September 2005

As I flew into DC...

Yesterday, in order to come to Washington, DC, I took my first trip by airplane since coming up with Sarah. Even though the trip wasn't on Sarah's airline - in fact, I flew on the largest competitor, American - I had a good opportunity to observe the work flight attendants do. Even the call-outs like "aft door check," "fore door check," and such caught my attention.

On my first flight, taking me from Los Angeles to Dallas - Ft. Worth, there was a tall redhead flight attendant who could've been the real-life version of Sarah - except that she was in her 40s, a genetic woman, and working for American. But she still managed to remind me of Sarah quite a bit. She was a very perky woman too, not hesitating to call first-time passengers "honey" and stuff to defuse tensions.

I wondered if Sarah could get away with calling her passengers "honey." Either she's too timid and suspicious of other people - including her passengers - to do so. Or, even if she does, passengers (especially men) who "read" Sarah's past in her appearance may not take it so well. I do want Sarah to be a friendly flight attendant, much better than your average demoralized United flight attendant. (On a side note, yes, I did find American's flight attendants more friendly, while United has the edge in airplane equipment.) In fact, I want Sarah to be THE reason many business travelers continue to fly United, because of her exceptional service which more than makes up for any serious offenses that her coworkers have committed.

I guess making Sarah say "honey" may be a bit too much. But I do want her to be the first one there whenever a kid starts to cry, a passenger spills hot coffee, or an air rage incident ensues. As I start writing a number of inflight scenes, I'll see what I can do with Sarah. I also better come up with a letter or two from passengers praising Sarah's service.

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