The view from my office overlooks the intersection of several runways at the airport, a source of constant entertainment as things come and go. I’ve even found a place on the interweb where I can listen to the tower and really get a feel for what I’m seeing. There’s a LOT going on and I’m constantly amazed at the calm voices of the Air Traffic Controllers as they choreograph the waltz of four runways, a zillion taxiways, all sizes and shape of airplanes and an absolute hornet’s nest of helicopters coming and going. The years of training and practice shine through.
Imagine a different situation…let’s say that we (the ATC) spent a few months learning where all the pavement goes and what the letters and numbers mean and helping little Cessnas and then, without ever actually seeing one before, somebody added big airplanes. Really big ones. Lots of them. Yeah, we know where they’re SUPPOSED to go but it’s an ever-changing environment and some planes are faster than others and some pilots are more precise than others and there are a whole bunch of balls to juggle at once to keep bad things from happening.
Well…get ready. Our time is coming. We’re getting down deep into the nuts and bolts and meaning of the “Requiem” and things are becoming more familiar and our little Cessnas are getting in and out of the place more smoothly all the time…but the big planes are coming…the orchestra. One rehearsal and then a show. Oh my.
So here’s the deal. First, the head of the ATC is the Empress of all things and is to be obeyed without question (yes, Susie, that’s you). Second, the Cessnas have to keep doing what they’ve been doing and doing it very well by being prepared and ready to rock when the 747’s start landing. They’re big and loud and scary but will make the whole operation complete and really cool and way big fun.
Crashing: bad. Words to live by.