On a recent flight from ATL to SNA there were several small delays in getting started. First the incoming plane was late, then there was the “cleaning”, finally they started the boarding process wile announcing that the plane was going to be catered, but the catering would be loaded as we got on (“to save time”). The first people on included three people in wheelchairs, two with oxygen, and several people with crutches and canes. As this plane was headed to a Disney location there were many small children in the next phase of loading. Those of us with many miles trooped on. Trying to cooperate with the flight attendants, this was a full bird that might – with a lot of good luck and cooperation – take off close to on time.
As the flight attendants loaded up the last people, they shut the doors with a sigh of relief as it looked like we would make our window for take off. We got towed away from the gate and onto the taxi way. The captain announced third in line, and we thought everyone was smiling – well except for a couple of crying babies in the back. And then we did not move, and we did not move and….one of the flight attendants rushed to grab the O2 canister, and there was a commotion in the lav close to the exit door. Blankets were being retrieved from overhead bins by the attendants rushing by.
I assumed the worst – one of the wheelchair bound people had a seizure, someone had died, something awful. The captain comes back on, we have to return to a gate where we will be met by EMTs we do have a medical emergency aboard and it is one of the flight attendants!
Back to the gate, the EMTs board and get the lady from the lav, and we have to await the replacement canister of O2, the replacement flight attendant, and the cleaners. Seems she had food poisoning (they think) – comes on very quickly and …well as they said we have to wait on the cleaners. I do hope she is Ok, and has fully recovered from both the illness and the embarrassment.
After we were in the air I overheard one of the flight attendants say, ‘well for lunch she did eat at that fried chicken place.’ I guess she learned.