I've been up in Auckland for the past couple of days for the NZ Film Awards (congratulations to Samoan language film, The Orator, for picking up the bulk of awards) and just flew back today.
When we left, it was the most beautiful day. Sunshine. Blue skies. Clear all the way up the island. One of the volcanoes in the center of the island erupted recently and it was cool to look down and see it still wreathed in smoke.
Today, flying back, was a different story.
It was drizzling in Auckland, with those thick, heavy clouds that tend to hang over the city for weeks on end. We punched through them, and almost immediately, turbulence started bouncing us around. It wasn't too bad, but bad enough that the flight attendants announced they wouldn't serve tea or coffee because of safety concerns.
I read my book for a while, and stared out at the clouds below us. Then we started going down, heading into Wellington. And things got really, really bumpy. I heard a woman ahead of me tell her companion she was scared. The wind buffeted us and tossed the plane around like a kitten with a ball of yarn.
But we made it down. And on the first approach, which on a windy day like today, is a little unusual. I've seen flights take three shots before actually touching down on the runway. Everyone clapped and cheered when we hit, and the flight attendants made jokes about not charging us extra for the roller-coaster ride.
Have you ever been on a super-bumpy flight?