Ramblings of a Tampa engineer

During a delayed return flight home, we started our descent and things got turbulent. As our plane approached the tarmac, our wheels touched down. Instead of slowly coming to a halt, we bounced back into the air as felt by the strange feeling in my stomach. We hit the ground again and this time the plane slowed and we completed the landing.

There was clapping around the plane. This wasn't an international flight to an exotic island, but a domestic flight around the states. They were clapping because there was an ounce of fear in some passengers and a successful landing after a blip of fear results in claps.

I did not clap nor feel scared. This wasn't because I was a trained pilot or had any professional knowledge in the matter. This bouncing on the tarmac incident has happened a few times in my life, so at this point if it happens, it's just a semi-normal part of the flight.

Unrelated, during a stay at a hotel I'm walking down the hallway with the family. An alarm comes over the intercom saying a fire alarm has gone off. The beeping and bright white lights begin going off. No one in the family turns around, panics or does anything. We just continued to the room to drop our luggage and relax.

The alarm kept on for nearly 10 minutes, all of which we ignored. Eventually the noise stopped and things went back to normal. Was there a group of hotel guests outside waiting? Was there an actual fire? I don't know. With all repeat fake alarms and/or tests, it is too difficult to tell a real threat from a fake one.

There are plenty of these random situations to reflect on and they make me wonder. I should have evacuated the hotel during the fire alarm. I didn't know if it was a test or not. Those minutes wasted ignoring the alarm could have been the time needed for me to escape safely. Thankfully that wasn't the case, but you see the point.

Confidence is slowly covering my fear, and I think I need to have a healthy amount of fear in order to respond to these situations differently. Since confidence is not always the smartest reaction.

Featured image by Caleb Woods / Unsplash

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