"The Wonder of it All" - A Flight from Sacramento to DC

Written by Ralph E. Shaffer

Wednesday, 27 November 2019

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Sacramento, CA, International Airport. Woof Blister reporting for Spoof International News - SIN. A prominent congressman from the Central Valley of California, who wishes to remain anonymous, but who may be the next Democratic governor of the state, recently had to make a quick trip back to Washington to cast a crucial vote early Monday morning. In the middle of the tule fog season, which often closes the Sacramento airport at this time of year, he scheduled a Sunday night flight to Ronald Reagan, since that terminal was closer to the capitol than Dulles.

Promptly at eight p.m., he boarded the plane... which then sat on the tarmac for over two hours as the tule fog became denser. At 10:30, the captain announced the bad news: the flight had been canceled. The good news? The airline had arranged for a shuttle bus to take those passengers who needed to get to DC by morning, to San Francisco, where they could catch a 1 a.m. flight that arrived at Reagan just before dawn.

The congressman was the first to board the shuttle, and the first onto the plane at SFO. He hadn't looked at the flight schedule. No need to. He'd arrive in plenty of time. When the plane took off promptly at one a.m., he relaxed.

What he didn't know was that this flight made one stop before reaching DC. So, when, after thirty minutes in the air, the pilot began a descent, our congressman asked a stewardess why the plane was landing.

"Our one stop," she smiled, "is Sacramento International."

The plane taxied to the boarding gate, a few passengers - some of which he recognized as having been on his eight o'clock plane that never took off - took the few remaining seats, and within minutes the pilot was rolling out toward the runway. Then the craft stopped abruptly... and sat there for the next hour-and-a-half, without any explanation from the pilot or crew.

Then, at 3 a. m... the pilot's voice came over the loudspeaker. "My apologies. The tule fog had temporarily relented just before we landed here in Sacramento, or we wouldn't have landed, but while we were at the gate it moved in again, and it's still here.

"We've been cancelled, I'm sorry to say. But the good news is that the airline has arranged for those of you who need to fly to DC right away, to take a shuttle bus back to San Francisco for the next available flight.

"Thank you for flying with us, and remember our motto: 'Experience the wonder of it all.'"

Our congressman called a taxi and, through the pea soup of the tule fog, went home, muttering: "The wonder of it all is how they stay in business!"

The story above is a satire or parody. It is entirely fictitious.

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