'Twas The Night Before Christmas

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'Twas the night before Christmas, and down by the gate

Not an aircraft was moving, they were all running late:
The boards were all flashing departure delays,
All from the snow that had fallen for days.

Both Boeing and Airbus just sat on the ground
While thousands of passengers all looked around
In the hopes that the weather would cut them a break
Or at least that their airline would spring for a steak.

The folks from Air Canada stepped up to the mike
With a look of bad news that no one would like
"It appears we have cancelled all flights ‘til tomorrow 
And adding to the frustration and sorrow…
We're stuck in the hold room until further notice
As CATSA's gone home and locked the gates for us.”

As they all milled around with their wishes and whims
A voice from the back cried "they've opened up Tim's"
And amidst the rushing to pick up a fresh java
There arose from the corner one helluva clatter

A Weight Watchers refugee decked out in red
With a massive white beard that just sprung from his head
Stood up on the counter by B-43
And announced to the crowd, "Just listen to me!"

"Though it seems to you all that you're stuck for the night
(And airlines again can't get anything right)
I've a plan in my bag if we all work together
That should see us cut loose from this God-awful weather." 
On the tarmac appeared a vision from heaven
A ready to board Boeing 747
And attached to the nose wheel were 8 massive beasts
Who seemed anxious to fly out in search of some heat.

"We need to get moving - we'll be boarding by row
And leave the hand luggage - it ain't gonna go.
In the spirit of Christmas as additional treats
You'll notice on board there are no middle seats!"

As I entered the aircraft and plunked down my ass
I noticed the seating was all business class
With pillows and blankets and comfy leg rests
I thought to myself, 'this bird's passed the test.’

From up on the flight deck things started to happen
Not a sound from the engines but the wings started flappin’
"Now Dasher, now Dancer, now Prancer and Vixen"
I began to regret all those drinks I'd been mixin’.

In an instant we'd climbed well above all the clouds
And the crew started meal service appeasing the crowds
Fresh lobster and filet and fine vintage wine
We'd managed to do it - we'd gone back in time.
To an era when travel was anticipated
As opposed to today where it seems constipated.

As I reclined back my seat for a bit of a snooze
While the rest of the passengers enjoyed the free booze
I wondered why all flights could not be this fine
When I heard a name called and it sounded like mine.

"Will the very last passenger please go to the gate
We've paged you 4 times and you're now very late!"
As I struggled to wake, I became more aware
That I'd fallen asleep in a departure lounge chair.

Heading to board through the passenger portals
Just one of a thousand other mere mortals
Who'd have to contend with a journey tonight,
Merry Christmas to all and to all a good flight.

Dave Heron is the owner of Pace Setter Travel & Tours in Okotoks Alberta who loves to travel, but will be staying home this Christmas season.

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