Quiet Sendoff

Ben stood in the terminal near Gate 13 at DFW watching the Boeing jet get slowly pushed back into the taxiway. He leaned against a wall and tried to relax as he studied the plane. Using the scrutiny he had learned as an F-15 crew chief in the Air Force, he noted the streaks across the left wing, a sure sign of loose panel screws.

He wondered how the last engine boroscope had gone. Had anything been missed? Ignored? What kind of shape are the hydraulics in? The plane had pulled into the gate a mere 45 minutes earlier, and he hadn’t seen anybody with a LO-PAC servicing the tires or a cart pumping hydraulic fluid.

Gas ’n Go.

Can you really trust a union workforce to prove a jet air-worthy in 45 minutes? Ben mused, a frown dominating his face.

Finally, as the engines came to life and the plane began to pull away, Ben longingly reached out and touched the cold window, almost praying to a god he didn’t believe in to protect his wife and son as their lives are entrusted to a consortium of lowest bidders.

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