Sunday 18 March 2018

Rake over ashes of 2010 travel trauma

Evan Fanning

We haven't heard from the ash cloud for a while. For a time in the summer the country was all talk about a new world order where air travel would be a thing we told our grandkids about and we'd all live entirely on produce from our local area, take our summer holidays in Bray and emigrate to America by rowboat.

Even the relative sceptics made plausible the possibility that there could be no flights for the next couple of years while the black cloud hovered over Europe like a bully at the school gates. And sure, even if it was to clear quicker, we'd probably all be dead from the swine flu bug that was tearing through us like the black plague. Then one day it was decided that the airlines were losing too much money so we might as well just get back up there and see what happened.

British Airways chief Willie Walsh flew around for a bit and his plane didn't come crashing down, so it was obviously nothing to worry about -- although if you applied that logic to, say, drink driving, then we could all be in trouble. It has been a big year for weather-related transport worries. An ash cloud sandwiched between two bouts of snow started a national obsessions with mundane logistics, worry about travel arrangements, and the weather.

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