Chapter 1 – Extract 8 from The Paradise Induction!
“Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to JFK New York, the local time is-”
Chris unwound his joints to the sound of the stewardess’ announcement.
“-for your safety and comfort, please remain seated with your seat belt fastened until the Captain turns off the Fasten Seat Belt sign. This will indicate that we have parked at the gate and that it is safe for you to move about. At this time, you may use your cellular phones if you wish. Please check around your seat for any personal belongings you may have brought on board with you and please use caution when opening the overhead bins, as heavy articles may have shifted around during the flight. If you require assistance, please remain in your seat until all other passengers have disembarked. One of our crew members will then be pleased to assist you. On behalf of British Airways and the entire crew, I’d like to thank you for joining us on this trip and we are looking forward to seeing you on board again in the near future. Enjoy your stay.”
“You were fast asleep, weren’t ya?” said Eadie. “Big celebration last night, was it?”
Chris rubbed his eyes. “No, just a few drinks with some friends.”
“Probably best you slept,” she continued. “That farting machine hasn’t stopped them flapping out.”
Chris breathed a chuckle and noticed an immigration form parked on his lap. Then, the familiar, putrid whiff, glided back in.
“Oh, wow. I see what you mean,” said Chris widening his eyes.
“You see what I mean?” she said, nodding, laughing, and holding her nose. “Blimey!”
Chris looked around, seeing passenger camaraderie through nods, raised eyebrows, smiles, and shaking of the head – a shared ordeal; they’d survived the battle of the sulphur stink, and they were pleased it was over.
He pulled a pen from his jacket and filled out the immigration form quickly before disembarking commenced.
“Good luck on the islands Chris,” said Eadie as passengers manoeuvred themselves to retrieve their bags. “All the best to ya.”
“Thanks very much,” said Chris. “All the best to you too.”