John Heaton (jheaton) wrote,
John Heaton

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Waiting in the wings

As I've noted before, one of my biggest gripes about the Washington DC area is that the local governments are, in my opinion, insufficiently aggressive when it comes to snow and ice removal. I learned this morning that it's not just the state, county and city governments who cower in the face of snow; the timidity extends even as far down as the Metropolitan Washington Airports Authority, the organization responsible for running the two DC-area airports.

I got to Dulles this morning around 7 AM, checked my luggage, and proceeded to my gate. The flight started boarding right on time, and everyone was on board with their electronic devices turned off, their carry-on luggage stowed in an overhead compartment or under the seats in front of them, and thier tray tables locked in an upright position right at 8:30 AM, when the flight was scheduled to take off.

But it did not. The pilot explained that we had to wait for the deicer to spray down the wings of the jet before we could take off. Which was weird, because it was well above freezing outside. But it was raining, and I suppose they were worried the water on the wongs would freeze once we took off. Or something. I don't know.

So we waited. And waited, and waited some more. The deicer finally showed up, and we took off a mere two hours late. Two hours! It boggles the mind. Given the importance of preventing ice from building up on the wings of airplanes, one would think that the MWAA would have dozens of deicers on hand, and would deploy them aggressively when necessary. But no, apparently they just have the one. Stupidheads.

But honestly, it wasn't that bad. The plane was not at all full, so I was not uncomfortable. I was able to take a nap, which was good since I'd only gotten three hours of sleep that night. Best of all, they kept us entertained by showing us Lilo and Stitch. Yay! I love that movie.

Also, the wings did not ice up and we did not crash and die, so in that sense it may have been worth the wait.

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