diamond geezer

 Thursday, June 28, 2012

"Hello Sir, and welcome to London's newest airport. Have you flown with us before?"

"We don't actually fly to Dubai from here, you understand, nor to any other part of the Middle East. But we do have regular services to North London and back again. We're expecting the service to be very popular."

"Would you like to check in your luggage Sir? That's a shame because we don't allow large suitcases on board. The cabin's only small and there's no stowage space. We've modelled ourselves on Ryanair, so passengers with only hand-luggage are given vastly preferential treatment. Or bicycles. We'd take your bicycle, Sir, if only you had one."

"First or second class, Sir? Most of our passengers fly economy, but that might mean sharing your row of seats with a screaming baby, several bouncy children or a bloke eating a kebab. Trapped with them in midair for the entire journey and no possible means of escape, imagine that. Or I could offer you an exclusive first class flight for just £86 return, with no other passengers in the cabin, guaranteed. Can I tempt you Sir?"

"Please have your boarding pass ready, Sir. If you have a contactless card you can go straight through, otherwise you'll have to queue here for manual processing. No really, Sir, it's very good value for money. Our stand-by fare is only £6 a mile, whereas our flights to Dubai normally cost 15p a mile."

"We don't offer reserved seating, Sir. It's a free for all, first come first served. But do try to get a window seat if you can. There are some excellent views of the North Greenwich Arena overspill car park and the Royal Docks riverside industrial wasteland."

"Before you board your flight I need to ask you to pass through those gates over there. No, they're not security, Sir. We allow passengers aboard our flights without any kind of scan or friskdown, it's company policy. We've done our risk assessment, and the worst that could happen is an explosion bringing the entire structure crashing down into the Thames. But we don't think that's likely, Sir."

"Chicken or pasta? We do neither, Sir, it's only a five minute flight. But we do have a duty-free trolley service in the terminal building offering drinks, snacks and light refreshments."

"There may be some turbulence during your flight, Sir. It's a steep ascent from the terminal, and then you can expect several bumps as the cabin levels out. No we don't have seat belts, we don't believe they're necessary. If there's any trouble just buzz the stewardess. She's on the ground in the control tower rather than on board, but don't worry, her beady eye is keeping watch over you."

"There isn't time for an in-flight movie, Sir, but we will be showing you some adverts. Adverts for ourselves, obviously, to encourage you to take a proper long haul flight later. You probably saw rather a lot of adverts all over the walls at the tube station on the way here, and on our sponsored London route map. We'd hate international tourists not to know we exist."

"Don't worry about the landing, Sir, that's taken care of by auto-pilot. You may have to wait a while at the carousel, but it's a domestic flight so there's no Customs to walk through. I should warn you there's bugger all at your destination, apart from a Londis and a Tesco Express, and an exhibition centre with no exhibitions for the next month. But our staff will be only too happy to sell you another flight back. Can I interest you in a frequent flyer pass, Sir? ...Sir?"

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