So it was pretty windy at Zürich Airport yesterday. This landings are looking kind of terrifying.

that video gave me sweaty palms. i've got a huge phobia of flying into any clouds.

taking off and landing in strong winds and storms isn't fun. in december 2014, I was flying from johannesburg to cape town on a rather small jetliner (I believe it was quite an old 737) hosted by a low-cost, budget airline.

as far as I know, these planes do a sort of 'sky ferry' service between the two cities all day. flying from johannesburg to cape town and back again, refuelling at each. keep this constant, heavy use in mind when I start talking about the noises the plane began making in midair.

so as we're rolling down the runway, lightning flashes. a strong crosswind blows into the plane just as the wheels begin to leave the tarmac and we're all flung to the side. the pilot recovers (I suspect it wasn't too difficult) but the winds are really getting up now. the plane is rocking and bouncing and, to top it all off, the cabin is illuminated by a lightning strike as we near the clouds.

there are a couple of openings in the clouds, so the pilot starts frantically weaving through them. I'm not even joking, we're tilted 30˚ to the left one minute and 30˚ to the right the next, all the while being jostled and bounced by this godforsaken wind.

just as we're weaving through the clouds, the left-side engine (I was seated at the left side of the plane) begins to make this very unsettling, high-pitched whirring noise. at the same time, the plastic walls around the cabin began making this sort of cracking noise, like they were warping and shifting with each bump.

passengers begin to whisper to each other. I distinctly remember an older woman behind me murmuring "is it going to break apart?".

although the whirring noise and cracking were present for the rest of the flight, it didn't end up causing any problems. the passengers (including me) were absolutely terrified, however.

picture it. you're flying into lighting clouds after taking a very strong jolt just as you left the tarmac. you're being jostled around quite roughly and the plane starts making a terrifying whining noise and sounding like it's about to fall to bits.

oh, and to top it all off (the weather was turbulent most of the way) I couldn't even buy any overpriced food because the refreshment carts were confined to the galleys.

i'm not sure what prompted me to share this. fuck whoever decides to let planes fly into windy storms, i guess

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