Jocelyn stood in the airport terminal, ticket and passport in hand. She was on the verge of her first trip overseas to the grand United States of America. She would then seal the deal on the biggest company merger of the century!
This was her first huge assingment and she wasn't going to soil it with nervous negative thoughts. Determinedly she checked the number of her terminal for the sixth time and headed toward it.
Her boss, Steve Rutgert, didn't think she could handle this. She could see it in his eyes when he came to tell her that his top associate, Tom Bruin was ill. There was reluctance, there was doubt, but there was a little amusement as well. He seemed ready to challenge her, and she was ready to prove herself!
"Flight 743 to New York has been cancelled," announced the loudspeaker. Jocelyn jumped to her feet. That was her flight! No way was it to be cancelled! Not now!
She ran back to the ticket counter. No flights to NY, for hours. There was a terrible storm. Clearly these people were no help. She dialed her travel agent.
"Simone! Quick! Get me to NY any way possible!"
Simone worked her magic and 20 minutes later Jocelyn was driving to a small airport just 30 miles away. She had booked a private small plane willing to take her to New Delhi, where a connecting flight would take her to Paris, then she could bypass the predicted storm by flying to Georgia, with a short layover before finally getting to NY. Simone said she owed her big time! Jocelyn conceded.
The tiny aircraft looked ancient! It seated only two, the pilot and one passenger. Jocelyn suddenly felt that she owed Simone a bit less. Then she spied the pilot.
"You the one needin' a lift?" he quipped. He was unshaven, covered in oil spots on his worn coveralls, and had what seemed to be chewing tobacco in his lower lip. Jocelyn gulped, swallowed her pride, and answered, "Yes, you must be the pilot who is to fly me safely to New Delhi." She tried to emphasize 'safely' because the plane did not look safe at all.
"Isn't she a beaut?" The pilot patted the craft lovingly, like it was a trained pet.
"Gorgeous, now can I board?" Jocelyn was eager to get started, and to get OFF the plane in one piece!
"You are in quite the hurry, Miss! Well, climb aboard!" The scruffy pilot "helped" her with her bags and buckles. Jocelyn cringed inside, but once safely buckled, felt determined to have a nice flight.
Take off was a breeze. Jocelyn relaxed once she was in the air. Thankfully her short stature made it so she couldn't see the land far below. Things seemed off to a great start, minus the luxury cabin of a large commercial plane, and the odd pilot who suddenly began telling her everything he knew about the places they were flying over.
Jocelyn wished she had a surface to bang her head against. He droned on and on. This must be what Hell was like, listening to a boring lecture with NO escape! He even had stories about warships that sank just over there in the middle of the ocean!
"Sir?" she finally said, "I hate to interrupt your lovely commentary on the sunken cruisers of '58, but I have a horrible headache, and would really appreciate some silnce, seeing as how my aspirin is stowed neatly belowdecks."
"Well, Little Missy! You do have a way with words, now most people arent' so kind when they tells me to shut up, but I like how you asked me, so I'll just turn off me 'ol chatterbox!"
"Thank you, I'd me much obliged." She imagined the pilot smiling to himself and thought, if he was this easy to convince, then she'd be able to talk those suits into a more favorable contract! She relaxed and closed her eyes.