Anyone who has sat through UN negotiations knows that the process can be slow and frustrating. There are long stretches of inactivity followed by a day when you realize that big things can be achieved when people and countries come together to seek consensus. For those of us who have been working on climate issues in the aviation industry, last week marked the culmination of a number of years of work.
The fact that the world's governments are even able to meet in New York is thanks to modern air transport. However, providing safe, efficient and reliable air service does not just help diplomats reach UN headquarters. Aviation plays a more fundamental role in helping to support development around the world.
Seconds in lore are splendid. We've heard that love is better the second time around, factory seconds are almost as good as factory firsts and everyone deserves a second chance, but a lot of heartache, anxiety and brushes with death have been the result of giving people a second thwack at the piñata.
50 years ago this week, at age 14, I took my first airline flight. My buddy Greg and I finished Sunday-morning caddying at a country club (earned five bucks for 18 holes!), got on our bikes, rode 9 miles to the Minneapolis/St. Paul airport, and - just for fun -- flew to Rochester Minnesota, 72 miles away. The ticket cost $10.50 round-trip.