…faster than a speeding wotsit… Concorde… 40 years young today…

 

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…my good pal, Jackie Beedie, WURLD traveller and trademark owner of ‘hic!’ reminded me today’s the 40th anniversary of the Concorde’s first ever commercial flight… how time flies (see what I did there, Mabel!)… during a lengthy career as a Financial Master of the Universe, this ol’ Scots scribbler has had more than his fair share of traipsing around the planet in pursuit of all sorts of business excuses… airports from Adelaide to Zurich, and Athens to Zaragoza have trundled my luggage across their baggage carousels… I’ll claim I was born to travel in the front of aircraft, the back of limousines and to test drive five-star hotels and bordellos… and not necessarily in that order… with differing levels of success in each of these objectives over the years, I must confess… sum’times my employers saw fit to honour my ideas of my station by allowing first-class tickets… at other times, cargo class was too good a description… but only once did Master Gallacher’s derriere ever plonk into a seat on the Concorde… and serendipitous it was, too… my schedule for a particular business jaunt had the Heathrow to JFK flight on British Airways… on the standard Jumbo jet… at the last moment the first class cabin had been overbooked, and a call was put out in the BA lounge offering a few passengers with minimal luggage to switch to the Concorde at no extra charge… the ‘no extra charge‘ bit for a Scotsman… well, I’m sure yeez understand… indeed the flight time for the Jumbo at 7 hours was more than double the 3 hours the Concorde needed… only 20 of these aircraft were ever built, of which 6 were the prototypes, so was I impressed?… alas, not… first of all, the seats were all the same class—kinda smaller, cramped versions of the Jumbo’s first class armchairs… I don’t think even a thin Sumo wrestler would have been comfortable… it was like flying in an elongated cigar tube… and the bluudy thing made a helluva rattling noise the whole time… the ‘beam-me-up-Scottie’ thing grew tired very quickly… of course on the plus side, there was the finest champagne for those who indulged (and back then one did enjoy a drop), propah canapés, served not by ‘our air stewards’ but by ‘our butlers’… if my wee Docklands Govan Ma could’ve known, she’d have disowned me from her grave…

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…it was one of those experiences I was glad to have done once, but funnily enuff, would not have chosen to do again… inverted snob, or sum’thing, me… see yeez later… LUV YEEZ!

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13 Comments

Filed under Blether, Scribbling & Stuff

13 responses to “…faster than a speeding wotsit… Concorde… 40 years young today…

  1. Reblogged this on Smorgasbord – Variety is the spice of life and commented:
    Flying Concorde with m’Lord Gallacher.. with a butler and the finest champagne… Didn’t like the rattling bit.. not good with that sort of noise on a plane.. a screw loose is not comforting!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. What a delightful opportunity. (How could it have been 40 years already?) Always wanted to fly in one of those just for the experience. It sounds like their image was more than the reality. (Not much one on long periods of loud continuous noise) Great giggle over the line “if my wee Docklands Govan Ma could’ve known, she’d have disowned me from her grave…”

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  3. My grandmother, who died aged 102 in 2011, flew in the Concorde twice and loved it – but she was an intrepid traveller, who also embarked across Russia on a train, all after she was widowed in her 60s…

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  4. Over-rated then? What a disappointment. Guess I’ll keep traveling in steerage. 😀 😀 😀

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  5. Rosa Ave Fénix

    40 years already… time flies really!!!!! A friend of mine (a super millonaire and I cann’ tell his name…) invited me in a privated flight and I said I din,t feel like going…. (hehehe I’m pulling your leg)… I always travel cheaper…..

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  6. Cool. I had one of the designers of the SST on my flight when he came down to San Diego, to negotiate building or parts contracts for the Concorde also dubbed SST. This was around ’67 or 68, the first prototype hit the air in 69, I believe. So, when I saw 40 years, I thought no, it was earlier than that, but it is correct, the first commercial flight wasn’t until later. I was a flight attendant at the time and he asked me out on a date but I already had a date with a boy in blue who had been a judge in a beauty contest I’d been in. In the heat of Vietnam protests, I wasn’t bailing on him(obviously nothing serious but I figured anyone who’d earned a purple heart deserved to be treated honorably). The SST guy and I in the meantime went out for breakfast instead. He was still kind enough to lavish me with all kinds of promo product for the SST with Concorde written all over to woo me with. I never saw him again. Boy, I sure wish I’d kept that stuff though. The funny things is I held onto them for about 20 years before getting rid of them. All first edition stuff too. I’d heard murmurs of the SST prior to that and it was exciting knowing someone responsible for building and negotiating the deals.

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  7. It sounds like a plane I’m glad I missed traveling in. I would also worry about something being loose if I heard a rattle. 🙂 — Suzanne

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  8. I would have loved to have flown concorde, despite being terrified of flying. The National Museum of Flight is 1 mile form where I live and it has a concorde plane, which you can go inside and find out all about it. It’s really fascinating. It was ahead of its time, supersonic commercial travel and in fact is still ahead of its time (despite stopping in 2003) as there are no supersonic commercial flights now! But what an awesome experience to have actually flown in one, despite the small seats and noise!

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