My Nightmare Flight In The Not So Friendly Skies

By Rogan Smith |
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Rogan Smith

The friendly skies were anything but yesterday. In fact, it was downright nightmarish.

I’ve landed in snowstorms, thunderstorms, been on small planes that have lost an engine and while there is always concern, I never panic. I have to admit that Saturday’s flight really tested my faith.

I was returning home after nearly two weeks abroad. It was a clear, sunny day – in my estimation, a perfect day for flying.

Right before I boarded the plane, I was in an airport bookstore and read a few lines from a magazine where a woman wrote a column about her fear of flying. I immediately closed the magazine because I don’t like filling my head with fear, especially as I’m about to take a flight.

I boarded the plane and took my seat. I was actually happy when the flight attendant announced that it would not be a full flight. That always makes my day because I like having more space to myself. So, I was alone in my row.

Something Feels Off About This Flight

I had a window seat on the left side. As I was staring outside, I don’t know why, but something felt off.

I like to watch as we take off. Pilots always say that the two most dangerous times on an airplane happen when you’re taking off and landing, so my eyes stayed glued outside. As we took off, it felt smooth at first, but minutes into the flight as we were still ascending the whole plane start shaking violently. I’m looking outside at the left wing and it is just flapping.

These two women were on the right side of the aisle crying their poor little hearts out. I mean the snotty nose type of cry. They were petrified. Then, I started hearing screams from children seated at the front of the plane and spotted passengers looking around at each other. The plane kept climbing.

I was wondering if the pilot was going to make some sort of announcement, but nope, nothing. Just silence. The plane kept climbing.

I took us a while to get to reach a cruising altitude of 10,000 feet and still the plane was rocking and trembling. There were dips in the flight, you know when it feels like you’re free falling. But, it would quickly level out.

The whole time I’m thinking, ok, this is it. We’re going to crash. This is how I’m going to die.

The plane starts to tremble even more, making funny sounds. The girls on the right start crying even louder.

My Thoughts Shift To My Family

I look outside of the plane and I’m like, there’s no way any of us would survive this drop. I immediately start thinking of my family. My niece, Tatyanna had turned 11 on Friday and her birthday party was scheduled for the day I was set to return. All I kept thinking about was our video call on Friday and seeing her sad face when she told me she missed me so much and couldn’t wait to see me. Then, I started thinking, ok, at least my financial house is in order, so my family would be ok. It’s a crazy thing to think, but everything was going through my mind.

Let me be clear. I’m not a fearful flyer. I have loved planes from I was a little girl. My godfather flew a twin-engine Cessna and I used to travel with him and my godsisters everywhere. One time while in the air we lost an engine. He didn’t panic, so we thought nothing of it. Besides, he assured us that we could make it on one engine.

A Serious Test Of Faith

However, Saturday’s flight was something else. I really thought I was a goner. I said a prayer and I felt God say to me, this is a test of your faith.

Oddly enough, in that same magazine that I was reading – you know, the one where the woman talked about her fear of flying – I saw a quote about how smooth seas never made a skilled sailor. What are the odds?  I said, ok, God. I see you.

The bumpy flight lasted an hour and eight minutes before finally smoothing out. It was only when we were flying over the beautiful waters of The Bahamas that I finally let my guard down. I said if I’m going to die, at least let it be in my country.

It's Better In The Bahamas.
My beautiful country laid out.

The sweetest feeling in the world was when the plane’s wheels hit the tarmac.

The only words I could find were, “thank you, God.”

My mum was keeping my car while I was away, so when she came to the airpot to pick me up, I told her the story.  She seemed relieved that I was ok, but the only thing she said was, “well, if you had crashed, they would have had no problem finding you with this loud ass tie-dye shirt you’re wearing.” That’s my family.  

Despite the ordeal, I still love flying. I hope I never die in a plane crash; that would be the worst way to go ever. A family can never have full closure without a body. I would hope and pray that however I die, there is at least a body that my family can say goodbye to.

Until the next trip!

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14 Replies to “My Nightmare Flight In The Not So Friendly Skies”

  1. Thank heaven nothing as such happened cause I wouldn’t know what to do. You do have a purpose here and God is definitely not done with you as yet sister. I hate flying even though I was in the industry for years (aviation) I would never want to die like that

  2. Booiiiyyyy Roe, flying ain’t my ting! I love to travel but scared of flying. If that flight was rough enough to scare YOU, I know I would’ve been like Madea In Boo 2 when she abandoned Hatti in the restroom! But I’m glad you’re safe and here to annoy me another day lol. Keep on writing great stuff as always

  3. 2013 two days after my mum died in GB I had to go to Abaco where she lived to clear up some stuff. Short flight, small plane ,morning thunderstorm. Really thought that was it all I kept thinking first Mummy now me so I know the feeling. Thankful you are safe on the ground aint no bus stop up there!

    1. Eugene….oh my God! You were on a plane during a thunderstorm? That is no joke! I am sorry your mum passed away. Mothers are so prrcious. I know just how you felt! It is a terrifying feeling. Like you said…ain’t no bus stop up there! Lol. Thanks for stopping by!

  4. Appreciate you sharing, i was on a flight to Canada and took a half hour ride to kamloops, that was the worst i experience. But grateful to God for his protection. Keep sharing and happy you are safe.?

    1. Thank you, Sharmaine. It’s amazing the scary situations we place ourselves in every day. I just hope I don’t get rattled on my next flight because I really do enjoy flying. I’m happy YOU made it safely. Planes are no way to go. Have a great day!

    1. My mother is a character. I thought she would lovingly throw her arms around me and say, “thank God you’re ok.” Nope! The woman said they would have no problem finding my remains. The shirt was loud, though. LOL.

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