Dawn of a New erAA; or sunset on a pAAst?
I truly do not know. I’ve watched the struggle for control of a post Chapter 11 American Airlines in the press. It has raged on for months now. To say it has been a tumultuous ride would be the understAAment of the decade, here on the line.
The Line: airline pilots refer to flying for a scheduled airline as flying on the line, or simply the line. As a line Pilot, it has indeed been tough at times to leave issues at the gate. Compartmentalizing a lost retirement, or further erosion in quality of life is not always easy to leave behind.
To keep the love of flight on the radar screen at all, has been nearly impossible.
On my last flight we were taxiing into the hold short area for runway 36R at DFW, AA’s fortress hub and HQ. I looked up after switching frequencies to tower and saw the new livery lit up in the darkness. Logo lights are something new to American Airlines, just like the 777-300 and its paint, that was taking the runway.
As the 777-300 rolled on its first revenue flight for American Airlines, I thought of the novels I’ve written about AA: Project 7 Alpha; AA in Burma 1942– Vengeance at Midway and Guadalcanal– End Game in the Pacific.
My characters were both real and imagined, AA’s proud legacy, historical. I wondered if that tail was a beacon to the future; or a candle of a past, flickering as it reaches the end of its wick.
The beautiful bird lifted off and disappeared into the darkness; its destination, like the airline’s unknown to me.