Pilot lights and flight crews

On behalf of your flight crew, I'd like to welcome you to the Dallas area.  We hope you have hot water.  We know you have many choices when you travel, and we thank you for choosing Southwest.

My fabulous trip to Danger Baby's wedding was ending, but my pilot had work to do.  Yes, my pilot needed to worry about hot water. 

Did you ever wake up to a very cold shower when you had a leisurely day to reignite the pilot on the hot water heater?  Silly.  It only happens when you need to be somewhere fifteen minutes ago. 

Relighting the pilot requires lots of reclining on the laundry room floor squinting into the view-finder while panicked about gas and explosions. A cold shower lowers reading comprehension of Kenmore instructions.

Thank heaven for piezo igniters.  Alas, I still feel the anxiety that went with striking matches on old gas appliances.  And it is a wonderful safety feature to have a hyperactive particulate sensor to shut down the hot water heater should a foolish person sweep behind the washer and dryer.  Oops, I went looking for odd socks and found dust bunnies instead.

I've heard of flight attendants doing good deeds.  A Southwest attendant even returned a library book a passenger left on her plane.  No pilot would get down on the laundry room floor and squint into the view finder for me.

Most of the time while I squinted, with or without bifocals, I couldn't see the flash of the igniter when I pushed the button "4-5 times rapidly".  It reminded me of other vacations when my dad wouldn't give us a quarter to put in the coin operated viewers at scenic locations like Lake McConaughy or at the top of the Aerial Tramway in Estes Park. 

This is the view we like to see from the scenic laundry room floor:

Yup.  That's the "Clean Blue Flame of Quality", the long ago slogan of the Lincoln Gas Company.  Hot showers.  Clean dishes.

Glad to sort this out for the dear friend who emailed from a western time zone, "It's a little early and I was trying to figure out how your pilot (taking you back to Texas from St. Louis) needed to worry about the hot water heater on the plane."

© 2010 Nancy L. Ruder

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