AIRBORNE

Since the COVID-19 pandemic sowed pandemonium around the world in the wake of borders of provinces and whole countries being closed, local and overseas flights being cancelled, and stringent restrictions being placed on the movements of citizens, the sky above our town has been quiet indeed. No local planes being flown for fun, no hangliders, and certainly no sight or sound of large aeroplanes moving between Port Elizabeth and Johannesburg, for example. What an unusual sight this is then:

This has not been oft repeated. There was a time when the low hum of a large plane flying overhead was ignored, now I look up and wonder where the passengers are going … and whether these flights are going to be regular once more … only to be followed by days of silence in the sky. The national carrier is still grounded, smaller airlines have had to shut up shop, and those that have opened tend to bypass Part Elizabeth – our nearest airport.

24 thoughts on “AIRBORNE

    • The environment simply must have benefited over the past year. I imagine the cost of flying might make some people think twice – until flights become regular again and there will be the usual weighing up between time and money.

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  1. Having been furloughed, particularly last summer, my daughter and I couldn’t help but notice the few airplanes that are flying. On a clear day, even the jumbos at 30000+ feet can be seen quite clearly. They can be deceptive too, sometimes looking like they’re going straight up!

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    • Much of the lighter traffic might be attributed to more people working from home perhaps. Ours is a town dominated by several schools and a university. The latter has been closed to campus students for a year already and the schools have been mostly off and now the children are back. They too mostly appear to be confined to their respective campuses, so there is a dearth of very young people who used to infuse our town with a lot of ‘energy’,

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  2. Flights here are less frequent, but I was surprised to learn that in general there has only been a 30% reduction of flights over same period last year. I’m amazed that people feel it is worth the risk!

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    • Mm your country is large enough to support flights within it. Ours is like a burst balloon at the moment with few flights between the main centres.

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  3. Any passenger flying into Canada now has to stay in a hotel for 3 days at their expense, while they await the results of a COVID test, (even if they had a negative one before flying, which is also a requirement), costing on average $1200-$2000 for their stay. This was passed a few weeks ago, to try and stop variants from entering the country, but it amazes me how many people are still arriving, and complaining about the cost! It would make it a very expensive trip.

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  4. With all the engine and other assorted bits crashing to earth mid flight, I’m neither too keen on contemplating airtravel nor longingly gazing skyward in the hope of seeing anything other than birds passing overhead 😄

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    • I am content to stick to road travel for now – a far more leisurely way of seeing the country when an opportunity to do so arises 🙂

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