A little discretion, please, even when flying out of Las Vegas
Returning from a couple of days of golf at Edgewood Tahoe on South Lake Tahoe, I found myself experiencing a couple of firsts in air travel. Flying Southwest Airlines back home to Houston, both of my flight legs returned to the gate after taxiing. I never had that happen before.
The first, out of Reno, Nev., returned because of a warning light. No big deal. The problem was resolved, and we made our way to Las Vegas, albeit an hour late. The flight from Las Vegas to Houston, delayed more than hour already, also returned to the gate after we initially left, but it had nothing to do with any sort of mechanical malfunction.
As we began to taxi toward the runway at Las Vegas’ McCarran International Airport, suddenly we stopped. Then came the announcement from the captain: “Uh, ladies and gentlemen, we’re going to have to return to the gate. But it will only be for a few minutes, and then we should be back on our way.”
Obviously not a mechanical problem. Somebody was either sick or drunk, I figured. Wrong on both counts. It turns out a woman, a blonde whom I estimated to be in her 30s, was leafing through the latest issue of Playboy magazine about 10 rows in front of me while we were sitting at the gate. The trouble is that she wasn’t the only one to see it. Apparently, within a few feet of her were several small children, and that solicited complaints (probably from the kids’ parents), so a flight attendant asked her to put it away.
Incredibly, she couldn’t wait until she got off the plane in Houston to crack open her smut again. As we were taxing, she was back in business. And that was that. Sure enough, when we returned to the gate, the door opened, everybody whipped out their cell phones, and a Southwest Airlines representative boarded the plane and escorted the woman off the plane.
She protested, of course, to no avail, and left amid a slight smattering of applause from the gallery in her area.
As one passenger astutely observed, “Once you get on the plane, you’re no longer in Las Vegas.”
The incident brings to mind a couple of questions. If passengers shouldn’t be viewing objectionable adult material on the plane (and they shouldn’t be), then why do they sell it in the airport gift shops? In fact, many airport gift shops sell stuff far worse than Playboy.
Also, did this woman not hear the part of the flight attendant speech where they tell us we must obey all flight crew instructions? Yes, they’re actually serious about that. It’s not as bad as joking about having a bomb, but you can’t blow these people off.
So let this be a lesson to us all. Indeed, if it happens on a plane in Vegas,you get to stay in Vegas.
|« Golf trip to Las Vegas in the summer? You bet||Watching the U.S. Open, playing Edgewood Tahoe, dreaming of golf in Hawaii »|