Thursday, November 25, 2010


“It's all about attitude, Boss. Ya know? Attitude is everything.”

Mike calls me “Boss” every time we fly. Normally I'd object, but Mike has a great...ah...attitude. It's his way of rendering respect. He's comfortable with it, and thus so am I.

Today, Mike and I are out flying while most people are home enjoying Thanksgiving with their families. Not us. We've got only a turkey sandwich, courtesy of our company, and we've got each other. Mike says, “Let's don't sweat it. We're doing what we we're meant to do. I'm just glad to be alive today.”

Yeah, attitude. I've got to remember that.

When I strolled back through the cabin prior to departure this morning, trying to look like I was enjoying working today, some of the passengers said,
"Thank you for working today," as if I had a choice. I just smiled.

Others said, "Happy Thanksgiving.” I wanted to say, “Thanksgiving? What's that? Is that one of those holidays I hear people talk about?”

But I didn't. I didn't want to sound sour. I just smiled and wished them a happy one. It's all about attitude, like Mike says.

Mike remarked in his Bronx accent that we can make our lives miserable thinking and talking about how things ought to be, or we can revel in what's been given us. When I see Mike's name on my schedule, I revel.

On this Thanksgiving Day, I’ve been given something few people will ever experience. MIke and I sat glued to our cockpit windows this morning on the run down to San Francisco from Portland, and back.

Look at these pix and be thankful with me what we saw this morning.

Tamale Bay northwest of San Francisco. 
(The long narrow inlet.)The San Andreas fault 
runs under the bay and exits out into 
 the Pacific to the lower right. On the left side 
of the bay is the North AmericanContinental plate. 
On the right is the Pacific plate. Makes you feel small.
Sunrise in the Bay area as 
we come in from the north.
Headed back out to Portland over 
an early morning San Francisco.
Looking back at the 
Golden Gate Bridge
 Magnificent Mt. Shasta
A volcano in NorCal
Crater Lake Oregon. A classic caldera. I
must go there some day, on the ground.
The shadow of our contrail moving 
north over the Cascades.
Who but mach rangers 
like ourselves can make such
a mark on the world?
But a fleeting mark, it is.