Train travel

By: Barry Sheppard

Want to see different places without extra expense?

Are you environmentally aware?

Do you know you can travel the world without stepping in an airport?

Which brings me to my story.

I was travelling back to London via Moscow from Japan. (The ticket I'd bought was one of those earlier days cheap fares.) As we crossed the South China Seas the plane seemed to be struggling. After a while announcements in Japanese & Russian were spouted out. The whole lot on the plane started bending over and putting their hands over their heads. I knew what it meant after serving nearly 4 years in the Army Air Corps in the Far East. I looked around. I couldn't see anyone else who looked like a Westerner. Ah! They remembered me in the cockpit by shouting out "We are crash landing".

With this, the plane started banking and going down in quite a decent fashion. It wasn't a tumble. Seemed like a normal descent. As we got nearer the ground it banked again. Yahoo. I see a lake and that made my mind up. I decided to run across the seats on the backs of all the passengers.

Push the door off and get ready to jump into the lake. Anyone wants to follow, up to them. For crashing into the ground was not going to be me. Take my chances with a jump, even if only a foot deep.

So, there I was. A young man. 5 years out of the Army. Still very fit. Taking my own life in my hands rather than people up front trying to control a huge ball of metal hurtling about in the sky. And to all intents and purposes about to crash and most probably killing every one onboard. Not me Bud. I’m off.

The plane got nearer the ground. The huge wastes of Siberia facing us. I'm just about ready. My thoughts were, I'll wait until it’s not a huge jump. Just enough to clear the ground and make it easier if that water was only a foot deep. Hopefully not push my legs up my body but alive. Here we go.

At the moment of decision, balancing on the top of a seat, I half fall, due to the plane taking a steeper bank to the left. Through the window see a beautiful site. A piece of land cut out like an Airstrip...it was. I stayed. We landed heavily, but who cares, we landed.

After a while, I found out, the plane, due to strong facing winds and too many passengers across the China Seas, had run out of fuel!

Long story short. Got to Moscow. Told changing planes as this one is useless. Help.

On reflection, and I do a lot?with this flight, some was maybe due to language differences.

Still didn't help me. That flight seemed to last forever. Tried to read a book after getting back up in the air. No good. Every shake or shudder set me off.

I never flew again for over 25 years and found a brand new world. I went to America from the UK, New York, by rail to Chicago and Los Angeles. Drove 3,000 odd miles to MiamiPsychology Articles, Washington up to Quebec. Down thru Canada to Niagara Falls. Through New York. Up to Montreal to catch my ship to London.

Absolute magic but that's another 150 stories.

That’s it folks.

Top Searches on
Travel and Leisure
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 
 • 

» More on Travel and Leisure