It has been difficult for me to write about that day, but I felt it was time. I was so close to it because I was a flight attendant for 30 years and had retired in 1997. I took off my wings for the last time, moved my suitcase to the back of the closet and began a life of living and working on the ground. When 9/11 happened, I was still coping with being grounded. Flying is like living on a different planet. You have your own jargon, your own time clock, your own lifestyle, and you live your life in a silver tube. No one outside of the job ever really understands. How can you understand what it means when you are told your landing gear may not be locked, but don't tell the passengers and keep smiling. Or the No. 3 engine has a slight fire in it, and we can't smother it out so we may have to ditch in the Caribbean, but don't tell the passengers and keep smiling. When your job is flying, you face your own mortality many times in your career, but you never truly feel it will happen.
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