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Wings To Fly Forever

Wings To Fly Forever
Author: Khadija Hammond Language: English
ISBN: 0930421027 Item No: 00000000757

Data Disc (CD) $5.50

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It's not surprising that after twenty years at 37,000 ft a person would have a different view of the world than we land-locked earth dwellers. Kat shares her emotions and innermost thoughts with the reader and takes you on a world tour both at sea level and in the clouds. The book moves like a jet with lots of action, humor and compassion. It's acton packed but witha message that we should all understand one another and live in peace. There's laughter, love and lust. There are messages and mysteries of the pharaohs. The sphinx is visited intimately as never before. Kat proves to be as good a story teller as she does a flight attendant. This book is a must for anyone who has ever flown or ever plans to fly on a commerical airliner.

Sample Chapter:

      THE QUEST        I had been working in a ghastly office. It was a nightmare in reality. No windows, blaring fluorescent lights that stretched endlessly and clattering typewriters that could drive a sane person crazy. I dragged out of bed every morning, fortified with three cups of strong coffee and prodded upon the grinding treadmill of the ‘eight to five’ crowd. I just was not cut out for it. I felt like a lioness in a cage, my free spirit singing lines from the song “Born Free.”  It was a way to make a living and my first real job after graduating from high school. But with my free spirit I felt tied with heavy bonds, like a slave on board a ship.  As far as the eye could see, endless desks sprawled. Gray-souled women with glazed eyes pounded the keys of countless typewriters. The noise was deafening, drowning out any hope of conversation.  I was young. I did not know how to get released from my self- made prison. I worked for my paycheck and lived for the weekends when I could escape and tear around the countryside in my MG-B.

      The only escape from boredom was the gossip that floated from one desk to another. There were numerous little affairs going on, often made the subject of jokes and sneers by the office staff. I kept as far away from the vicious circle as possible, but it made me a stranger to the rest of the group. I just did not fit in.  Sometimes, I felt as though I would go mad with the monotony of the situation. Our office was attached to a huge hanger where aircraft were built. It reminded me of a giant toy factory for adults. I loved to be sent on a mission over there. The scent of sharp metal assaulted your nose as you entered the building. As many as twenty aircraft were lined up in various stages of completion. One could imagine the birth of the plane as a huge hulking animal, surrounded by countless engineers and builders, lumbering along the line and finally rolling out majestically as finished aircraft.  One day I sneaked out of the office to watch our newest aircraft, the C-5 Galaxy, roll out of the assembly line. I followed her progress until one day she went to be tested.  She stood like a giant eagle with gleaming outstretched wings at one end of the runway. The test pilot ran up her engines to check airworthiness. The ground shook as the engines built to roaring full force. My heart sprang up to my throat. Never had I seen so beautiful a thing.

 That is when the longing started deep within my heart. Slowly she began to roll forward, her long white wings gleaming in the sun. The scream of the engines cut through my ears as I covered them. She roared down the runway and lifted in splendor from the ground like a huge white swan. My heart burst with emotion. Through tearful eyes, my soul lurched forward like a bird with broken wings. Yes, I was rooted to the earth but something in me soared.  The realization dawned within: I longed to fly!

 The next morning I dragged to my desk weary to the bone. I tried to forget the beautiful dream of yesterday, where something in me soared for a moment with the great white aircraft. I picked up a letter and began to type, but my mind was not on it. The rumble of a thousand typewriters drowned out any hope of a conversation with the girl who worked at the desk across from mine. I could not concentrate on the boring letter. Adventure beckoned to me. I had to shove the sensation down and tried to ignore it. I idly toyed with a book of matches someone had left on my desk, opening the cover. There was an inscription inside. I will always believe that God sent it to me in that pack of matches:

“If you do not like what your life has become, you have the power to change it.”

 It was like being struck by a thunderbolt. I began to weep and laugh all at once. Could it be really that simple? Did I have this power? Could I change my life? Yes, my heart spoke softly. I was the one writing my own life script. It was up to me to change it. My mind raced to the rescue throwing up roadblocks. Why didn’t I stay where I was? At least I had a job and a home, even though it was not the dream of a lifetime. Didn’t I realize that it would mean a complete change? I would have to move to a new city (this thought really filled me with terror, for I had never been out of the state of Georgia.) It would spell change if, and only if, the airlines would hire me. And who did I think I was anyway? Those airlines wanted beautiful girls and I never saw myself that way. And anyway, how was I to go about interviewing? I had never interviewed with an airline. Blah, Blah, Blah…  I was friendly with one of our engineers who was a pilot and flew a small airplane. I mentioned my idea one day as I ate my sandwich at my desk.  “Send them a cover letter and a resume,” he said.  “What’s a resume?” I asked. I really was green!

 “It’s the preferred way to job search,” he’d said.  He also told me he had a booklet from the Air Transport Association which had the addresses of all commercial airlines. Now I was getting excited. I borrowed the booklet.  Weekends found me in the Library studying books about writing resumes and interviewing. I am an artistic person and had done some photographic modeling so I had some good photos of myself in a swimsuit.  The boss was surprised when I came in early. Usually I barely made it, rushing in to punch my timecard at the last moment. I was more than an hour early.  “Well Sandi, look at you!” He’d said. “What a surprise.”  On my lunch hour and during breaks, I was hard at work on my resume. I attached two pictures, one a head and shoulder shot and the other swimsuit. Eagerly I stuffed the resumes and cover letters into envelopes and mailed them off.  I was terribly nervous every day as my trembling fingers opened the mailbox. Three days went by. No word…then a week, still no word.  Then the replies became to arrive, fast and furious! With each response were formal applications and free tickets to fly to the main offices of the various airlines for a personal interview. I had never even been aboard a commercial jet. I had helped out in some Civil Air Patrol missions, flying up into the north Georgia Mountains on small aircraft as an observer and flying was in my blood. But flying to a strange city was a whole new ball of wax! I was only 20 years old too and for a southern woman that is young!       Money was tight. How was I to afford the time necessary to take off and try to land the job of my dreams?       I summoned up my courage and went to interview with a local airline. Better to hone my skills close to home before jetting off to a strange city.

      Delta Airlines had a beautiful office. I remember walking in and feeling a huge tightness in my throat. My hopes soared as the interviewer seemed to like me but suddenly dashed to pieces. Delta had a “no relative” work rule. I should have lied but I couldn’t. My brother-in-law worked there so the interviewer informed me sadly that my visit had been in vain. They had put me through the mill before breaking the news. I thought I had made it. I walked slowly out of the building with head hanging, depressed.  “Your hired, honey!”  I looked up. A group of aircraft mechanics wearing Delta work uniforms grinned at me as they drawled out the sentence. I smiled shyly,

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