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Saturday, 19 September 2009

Inter-Continental Fright

I took my first inter-continental flight from Kuala Lumpur to London this past Wednesday.


It is also my first air travel since like ten years ago. So you can imagine how worried I was at first. Have I got my passport? Where's my ticket? Is the plane reliable? What happens if I am denied entry by UK Border Agency? Can I solve all my problems without my parents' support?

Nope. Not my plane. Could've boarded the wrong flight.

When I approached the plane, I was impressed. Engineers are indeed smart people. They've turned pieces of scrap metal into a flying structure!

When the plane was ready for take-off, however, I got worried. The air stewards and stewardesses demonstrated what to do in case of emergency, which even got me more paranoid.

Things weren't better when it started to move. Peering through the windows, I noticed that the wings aren't perfectly rigid and vibrated when the plane manoeuvered over uneven ground. What the nonsense were materials engineers doing?!

Then the engines roared and the plane gathered speed. Faster and faster it went, and the wings angled further upwards.

Can the long thin wings even support the 300 passengers?

And we were off. I swallowed hard as we climbed further up. Then it was safe to take off the seat belts again.

So how does it feel like to travel 40,000 feet above sea level at an incredible speed of 0.8mach (850km/h)?

Nothing. In fact, I felt like I was conned. Was I even off the ground at all? I didn't pay some RM1000 for getting stuck in KL LCCT for 14 hours you know. It was even no more exciting than, say, driving in Need for Speed. Need for Speed's a game, for goodness's sake!!!

And so, the 14 hours on-board flew by (no pun intended) uneventfully and we touched down at London Stansted Airport.

What a great fright flight.

And yeah, engineers are still smart people.

PS: Photos of UK to come in a few days' time! Plus, check my Twitter page for real time updates -- it takes days for me to plan blogposts.

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