We saw the incoming flight â€” the ticket says Air Canada, but it’s really an Air Georgian 18-seat Beechcraft. I had an assigned seat, and didn’t pay much attention to the announcements offering $300 for volunteers to take the Continental flight to Newark, for a later flight to Toronto. The Continental flight left. And 10:15 a.m. passed. Nothing much seemed to the happening, so all of the passengers were starting to huddle around the desk at the gate.
The problem actually wasn’t the number of seats. There was 18 passengers and 18 seats. The problem was that 18 passengers in 18 seats plus their luggage would be too heavy for the Beechcraft to take off. With no volunteers to stay behind â€” some with weddings to attend, others who had stayed an extra night, as I had â€” the airline seemed to be in stalemate.
After another 15 minutes with no action, one couple said that they were so frustrated, that they were going to drive to Toronto instead. That’s a 10-hour drive, but they were so angry that nothing was happening, that they said they would prefer to be on their own.
Less two passengers and their luggage, the 16 remaining passengers got on the plane, and were off the ground within 10 minutes.