Episode 25 • Travel
Last month I had to fly to South America for work. It was late when I bought the tickets so the only flight left was a red-eye, which meant I had to be at the airport at 11.30pm. So, that night, as you might imagine, I was pretty tired… but you know how airport seats are, right? Probably the most uncomfortable seats in the world. So I was happy to get on the plane. I thought I could try and sleep a bit. But right as we were about to take off, a message warned us that the flight might be a bit bumpy. A bit bumpy?! You have no idea! Worst flight of my life! The turbulence was so bad at one point, every passenger started screaming and panicking! It was the scariest 4 hours of my life. We finally landed and I thought that was it but … as I look to my right, I see that the woman sitting next to me was totally unconscious! I get closer and prepare to shake her when she opens her eyes. I was like “Are you okay???”. She looked at me surprised and just said “Oh, I think I’ve fallen asleep. Are we there already?” Simply unbelievable, she was sleeping the whole time!
That was a tough story to read. It was a hard voice to make, and I don't even know how it turned out. Probably not great. Let's take a look at today's expressions.
'The only flight left was a red-eye.'
• Is a red-eye a flight that normally leaves during the day or at night?
The guy from the story was at the airport at 11:30 PM because a red-eye is a flight that normally leaves at night.
• Why do you think it’s called a red-eye?
That's a weird name for a flight. Well, you're leaving at night, and you're probably going to be flying for a few hours, and do you think you're going to sleep? Not really, right? What happens to your eyes when you don't sleep? When you don't get enough sleep? They turn red. This is why those types of flights are called red-eyes. It's likely that your eyes will get red.
• Have you ever taken a red-eye?
I have taken a bunch of red-eyes because normally, they're cheaper. I've taken a few, and normally, I can sleep through a flight without too many problems but still, I think my eyes did get a little bit red.
'We were about to take off.'
• If a plane takes off, does it leave the ground or touch the ground again?
Taking off, it's the woo when it goes up in the air when the plane leaves the ground.
• How long does take-off usually last?
Take off itself usually takes about 30 to 40 seconds, depending on the flight.
• Do you like the feeling you get when the plane takes off?
I do. You know that sinking feeling as if you're leaving your body behind? It's this out of body experience. I like the fact that I still feel safe because you can get that same feeling but on a roller coaster but on a roller coaster, I wouldn't feel safe. I do like it. I enjoy it. I get excited.
'The flight might be a bit bumpy.'
• If a flight is bumpy, does the plane move up and down or left and right?
If a flight is bumpy, it means that the plane moves up and down.
• Are the movements fast or slow?
Fortunately, they're pretty fast. It's not up and then down, no. It's up, down, up down, usually really, really, fast.
• What should you do if a flight is bumpy? Should you get up or stay seated?
If a flight is bumpy, it's always a good idea to remain seated. They'll even tell you. The pilot will tell you. The flight attendants will tell you because you don't want to fall on someone's lap, for example.
• Have you ever been on a bumpy flight?
Not really. I've flown quite a lot so I'm sure it's happened but it's never been so bad or for a very long period of time to the point where we get scared. Maybe it was just like three or four seconds of the plane going up and down very fast and that was it, so nothing traumatizing. I can still fly and be fine when I have to fly.
'The turbulence was so bad at one point...'
• When turbulence strikes, does the plane move in a regular way or irregular way?
That's what's so bad about turbulence, the fact that the plane starts moving very irregularly, very erratically. We're like, "What's going on?"
• What causes turbulence?
I've had to do a little bit of research because I wasn't sure about this but mainly, it's two things. One, it's about air change. I've read changes in air temperature and stuff like that, and bad weather.
• Have you ever experienced turbulence? How did you react?
I have experienced turbulence, somewhat bad turbulence once when I was flying to New York and I got really scared, but I was trying not to show it. I didn't grab anyone's hand or anyone's arm. I was flying by myself, so I couldn't even really say anything so I just kept quiet pretending everything was cool being like, "Oh, this is not scary at all. Everything's going to be fine." Inside, I was screaming, "Oh, my god, I haven't even told my family I love them," and stuff like that.
'We finally landed.'
• If a plane lands, does it leave the ground or touch the ground?
Landing is the opposite of taking off. If taking off means to leave the ground, going up into the air, to land means to touch the ground.
• And does it touch the ground safely or not?
Landing means touching the ground safely. Now, some landings are better than others. I'm sure you know it, but it should be an overall safe experience.
• What’s the first thing you do after your plane has landed?
Are you one of those who claps like, "Hey, we made it safe." I don't do that. I think it's funny when people do that, actually. Some people don't like it, but I think it's funny. The first thing that I do is definitely turn on my phone and check my social media and messages and emails and stuff like that.
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