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Health: Welcome

Braniff Flight Hijacked 1979 


With two Military Air Craft on either side of our plane

The Captain was instructed to immediately land the aircraft.

Before the very fast, steep landing the Captain had to expel all the fuel to be able to land.

The passengers were all very unnerved and panicky at this point

and when we landed on the tarmac we still had no idea where we were.

We looked out of the windows and observed hundreds of Asian

looking people crowding around our plane.

  One good thing we noticed – the crowds did not look hostile or in the least bit angry,

merely curious – they had never seen the multi-coloured fleet of

Braniff Airlines before.

The gentleman passenger sitting across the aisle from us had a mini movie camera and he was filiming the various comings and goings of the flight crew. 

At one point an announcement was made asking if any passengers had any snacks or candy with them because the rear cabins had not been served a meal and there were children on board. 

I had a peek into the other cabins and the plane was full. 

We were told that there were many refugees from Vietnam on board and they were all very nervous thinking they were going to be taken off the plane.


They were not,

but we saw the captain leave the aircraft

in his smart, white uniform with gold braid.

loaded with files, manuals and paperwork.

Now we were getting seriously worried. 

We were even more worried

when Kathy, The Purser, announced that

The Captain was going to negotiate for our release!!!

  The Braniff Crew were really good about keeping us informed on what was going on and how we had wound up in Manilla.  In order to break the tension amongst the passengers the flight attendants, all dressed in their hot pink mini skirted uniforms, brought us all into their confidence and pretty soon we were all on first names and cracking jokes. Laughter is the best medicine. All the passengers were visiting in the different cabins dispensing candy and cookies to the children on board.

Because of the delay leaving Kai Tak airport in Hong Kong

the Captain took a shorter route - into Phillipipine Air Space.

It seems that the Philippine Aviation Authority could not find any agreement

with Braniff Airways giving them permission to fly in their air space. 

The Captain had to contact Braniff Headquarters to make sure the

agreements had been correctly filed and could he get a copy – somehow?? 

           In 1979 there was no internet or emails and Faxing was not anything like it is today.

           The Captain tried to get someone at the tower to call the Phillipine government and

           tell them about the agreement.  No dice – a telephone conversation would not suffice. 

           Eventually, amid cheers and applause, the Captain did return, still loaded with paperwork

                                 with permissions all signed and sealed.

BUT, now we had another problem. 

Braniff did not have an account set up at Manilla to bill for refuelling the aircraft. 

Before we could leave we had to have fuel and the Captain did not have the wherewithal to pay for it. The passengers thought there might be a 'Whip Round" to get enough money to buy the gas.

One of the flight attendants saved the day because she had a Visa credit card - with enough credit on it - that the Manilla Airport would accept, 

We all watched anxiously as that sea of Asian airport employees choreographed all the necessary moves, checks and attached hoses until the plane was ready to leave.  No trouble getting a departure slot this time and we were allowed to continue our journey. 

By now we were VERY, very late and all the relatives not knowing where their loved ones were there were teams of Braniff employees assisting with answers to questions. We had to wade through customs and immigration, hundreds of airport personnel, then loved ones of the passengers, AND the news media clamouring for quotes and pictures.  Everyone was so tired and hungry we just wanted to get on home.  And so ended our unusual trip to Hong Kong.



The Squanderbug

may have infected many areas of your life, 

Have you wasted your good health by not eating healthfully? 

Have you wasted your time on too many technical gadgets? 

Have you wasted your money by shopping for wants not needs. 

How is your credit score?

Have you wasted your living space with too much clutter?

  Is your garage full of stuff and are you paying for extra storage?

The consequences of squandering away your health are numerous and serious. A few are listed here.

If you eat too much you will get fat, your clothes won't fit and you will have to spend money on new clothes instead of adding to your savings account. (* squandering money)

All of us have too many clothes (*squandering the resources of planet Earth).

If you get fat you will not look your best, which will lower your self-esteem, which will reflect in your work and life - and it will limit your fashion choices.

If you eat too much of the wrong kinds of food the consequences can be very serious, i.e, diabetes and heart disease

(* Diabetes)

Maintaining a healthy weight will allow you to participate in sports, get out in nature, get fresh air, (which will improve your health) think well of yourself and possibly make new friends. You will also get better insurance rates and coverage.

Squandering your fitness will limit your mobility

Our bodies are made to move. Not being active makes our lungs, muscles, bones and brain atrophy at varying degrees. Sitting is one of the worst things you can do to your body. Running and jogging is not for everyone, but most people can walk and should do so as often as possibly - even for little things - jump up and get moving. 

There is no magic number of steps - just move around a lot.

 Do not squander your foot health.

Those who jog can attest to the importance of good shoes. Good shoes doesn.t mean expensive. Inexpensive shoes are made with good arch support too, they just don't have the brand name plastered all over the shoe.

Many of us are working from home now and may not be paying attention to our feet. Your feet hold up the weight of your whole body – this a very important function – give them all the help they need. 

Wearing house slippers all day every day is not very good for feet.

Our bodies need the support of healthy feet in comfortable shoes.

Our mobility is definitely limited if our feet hurt.

This applies to everyone who is housebound....because we are all jumping up and moving around, right? 

if you work from home get up in the morning, eat, brush your teeth, get dressed and put shoes on your feet – just like you would if you went to a workplace. 

Set up a mirror where you work at home and you can see how you feel which will be reflected in how you react to people on the phone or virtually.

Squandering your brain fitness covers too many areas to list here, but your brain was made to be used and it should be used as much as possible.

Interacting with other human beings (not cell phones) is primary, much more interesting and rewarding. This activity should be followed by listening, observing, watching, reading, writing but especially talking.

Puzzles are not for everyone, but greeting anyone and everyone is something most of us can do. Nearly everyone responds and it is contagious - they will then greet others.


        Healthy Habits

Is being healthy going to cost a lot of money?

 Do you need to pay someone to go on a diet? 

Do you need to pay a personal trainer? 

Do you need to pay someone to stop putting cigarettes in your mouth?

Do you need to pay someone to go for a walk? 

Do you need to pay someone to block out advertisements on television?

Healthy Habits are steps we all know and can easily fit into our lives. 

There is no one size fits all. 

Each person has to prioritize what to include in their routine based on its importance.

Good health is a gift – don’t squander it.

The chances are very good that you were born with everything you need for a long and healthy life.  Things only start to go wrong when we ourselves are in charge of putting things in our mouths and not using the equipment we came with.

Most people recognize if they are overweight or have shortness of breath, but having type II diabetes or high blood pressure is harder to detect. Ask your doctor to check your glucose level in blood tests and get the doctor to alert you if you are pre-diabetic.  Many people are and do not have any idea of how dangerous that is AND how easy that is to reverse.  Check your blood pressure every chance you get; with your own blood pressure cuff or at the pharmacy.  Preventing these issues is easier and cheaper than a cure.

  Parents, television*, society* and our culture* all contribute to the deterioration of our health, but eventually it is up to each of us to use another piece of our basic equipment – our brain.

 We usually don’t pay attention to this until we are older, but we need to start living more healthfully at the latest by middle age.  Get into a mindset of ignoring advertisements* for unhealthy food.  Get into the habit of walking, exercising and interacting with people.

Think of that wonderful gift you have – that fit and trim body that doesn’t need a variety of pills to keep it operating smoothly.

 Other people can’t walk up a flight of stairs – but you can and do at every opportunity as well as going for a brisque walk of about 2 miles every other day.

Other people wheeze and get out of breath, but you do not because you never smoked cigarettes or have stopped spending money on that health hazard.

Other people can’t fit into neat fashionable garments – but you can because you ate healthy unprocessed food, did not get fat and now can show off your youthful enviable physique.  Baggy track suits don’t get many compliments. Rolly-polly stops being cute at 5 years old.

 Other people have to take pills to combat diabetes or high blood pressure, but you don’t because you recognized that you had to stop eating sugar, carbohydrates and processed foods.

Being influenced by television, family and our peers is much more difficult and that is where our superior brain comes in.  Use it to be sensible and healthy.

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