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AN IRISH COINCIDENCE
I recently got married in Castlemartyr Resort, Ireland, and it was a fairy-tale wedding. We had guests come from as near as Castlemartyr and Cork City and from as far away as New Caledonia and Peru. Even the Irish weather held up. Three days after I returned to work, I was back on an American Airlines flight when I noticed Dublin on the cover of the Sept. 15 issue. I quickly picked up the magazine and read the Editor’s Note and was just blown away when I noticed the title — “County Cork Ballyhoo.” As it turns out, my new husband is from a small town in County Cork called Ballyhooly (apparently the word hooligan was derived from the town). I was even more astounded when I noticed the photo of Adam Pitluk and his travel writer cohorts was taken in none other than Patt Shortt’s pub in Castlemartyr — the exact location where I had hosted my wedding rehearsal dinner two weeks earlier. Reading your magazine made me reminisce about the wonderful times and the “craic” we had in Ireland. I’m also saving the Dublin article for our next trip to the Emerald Isle, and I will insist that we spend a few days in the great city before winding our way down to Ballyhooly. Thank you, American Way, for making re-entry into work life much more enjoyable.
EDITOR ADAM PITLUK RESPONDS: Ah, birds of a feather we are, Maite. Sounds like we just missed each other, though we had similarly amazing experiences. Glad we could help you relive your big day.
A TRUE HERO
I am an Executive Platinum member so I fly often and always read American Way. I was prompted to finally write you after reading “Revolutionizing Prosthetics” in the Aug. 15 issue. Jan Scheuermann is truly a hero not only because of her courage in her daily life but also through her willingness to be interviewed for this article and show us prosthetic advancement firsthand. These new technologies will help thousands who have little or no mobility. My sister was a quadriplegic for the last years of her life due to multiple sclerosis, so I understand some of the challenges Jan and her family face on a daily basis. Kudos to all of them!
I split my time between Buenos Aires and Montreal because my daughter and my son live, respectively, in those cities. On my last trip, it was a pleasure reading “All Eyes on Charlotte” (Aug. 15) in American Way. It’s such a smart magazine. Its size is so comfortable, its articles so interesting, its information, its maps, its puzzles (Sudoku and Crossword) — everything is good. Coming back from Montreal, while I was reading the article “International Appeal,” I discovered that a nearby passenger (a young lady) was reading the advertisement, “4 Tips for Modern Dating.” Nice! Thanks for offering that magazine.
A SOOTHING READ
As I get older, my fear of flying seems to increase a little each year, resulting in flight anxiety. I seem to feel every bump, hear every sound and worry about weather patterns and turbulence. But I try endlessly not to let it bother me. When I started flying American Airlines, I started reading American Way and found that the articles and the overall content seem to calm me, especially the personal stories other travelers submit. Other airline magazines are not as personable as yours. After takeoff on a recent flight, I decided to write to American Way about my anxiety. I was able to get through half of the magazine when I started thinking there are probably a lot of travelers like me, and it would be prudent of me to write a letter and let them know they are not alone. That’s my message. American Way found another way to calm me during my flight by allowing me to write this letter. Thank you and please don’t change your product because it really works for me.
I’ve been flying American Airlines for much of my life as evidenced by my original frequent flyer number and rapidly approaching 83rd birthday. As a now “mature” frequent traveler, I have read many issues of American Way. For one most memorable trip, I arranged an intergenerational adventure vacation for my grandson and me to visit Montevideo, Uruguay; Buenos Aires, Argentina; and Santiago, Chile. Your magazines helped us while away many long hours on the airplanes and prepared us for what was yet to come. Cody had taken three years of textbook Spanish, so he read the Spanish articles in Nexos as I read the English articles. The Spanish articles were an interesting and challenging refresher course for him. I wanted him to test his language skills among the varied dialects in South America. He needed to adapt to the local Spanish of each country, and he did that. He was able to help us ask for directions, find hotels and restaurants and arrange for tours and entertainment. We had a wonderful adventure and he earned an “A” for his performance.
On a recent flight, I enjoyed the column “Mail By Mule” (Aug. 15) and must say that I never imagined mail being delivered to a Native American village called Supai on the floor of the Grand Canyon. The column made me think of my hometown in Florida called Hypoluxo, also a native American name. Hypoluxo means “water all around” in the Seminole language. Hypoluxo is known as the “home of the barefoot mailman” because in the early 1900s, the mailman walked along the intracoastal waterway carrying a heavy mailbag from Hypoluxo to Miami and back. The 60-mile trek took one week each way. I’ve always loved this unusual piece of history. Thank you, American Way, for sharing the unique story of “mule” mail delivery in the 21st century.
In the American Way column “Love Is All Around Me” (Sept. 1), Adam Pitluk wrote this sentence: “I needed a few days for the desert to holistically work on me.” When I read that, I was on my way to Tucson, Ariz. It was the day after my youngest brother’s passing and it became my mantra for one of the most profound experiences of my many trips to the Sonoran Desert. Instead of dreading the coming days, I looked forward to the soothing ephemeral mist wafting over the Santa Catalina mountains. There was an awakening of life among the low vegetation and this combination was a soothing holistic balm that deeply penetrated my diminishing stress-filled days in Tucson. I found a holistic healing in the desert and in my heart and carried home pleasant memories of my brother. My grieving soul “needed a few days.” They will last a lifetime.
Most of my traveling is on American Airlines and I always read American Way, sometimes cover to cover. It’s fun reading about places I have been and other places I would like to visit. My favorite, however, is the Mensa quiz. It can keep me entertained for quite a while. Although I can solve most of them, I am sure it takes me much longer than the Mensa members. But I have a question for them: What is a two-word name of an airline magazine and a way of life in the U.S. (11 letters)? A _ _ _ _ _ _ n W _ _.
T.K. RESPONDS: We loved this, Deborah! Thanks very much for the creativity and the enthusiasm for American Way. As for our Mensa skills here in the office, that remains to be seen since we have the answers in front of us as we put the page together. One of these days, maybe we’ll try the puzzle before we look at the answers to see how smart we are.
Sharing my sad experiences with other airlines with my orthopedic doctor, he suggested that I try American Airlines on my next trip to Indiana from Palm Springs, which I did. To my amazement, I was overwhelmed by the experience. I was treated like royalty by the ticket agents, the flight attendants and the kind people who wheeled me to my next flight. I had brought along my new tablet and thought I would have time to figure out how to use some of the apps that were downloaded on it. But I noticed American Way and began reading about other people's experiences, new developments in technology, health issues plus maps of the concourses in Dallas that gave me a good idea of where I would find my next flight. I am 82 years old and work as an evangelist. I have flown on many airlines. But I have to admit, this flight was the best ever. And you guessed it: My new tablet never got opened.
A.F. RESPONDS: It makes us really happy to hear that our magazine took precedence over your new tablet, Joyce — that’s some stiff competition. We hope you continue to fly with us, and if you’d like, feel free to download our new American Way app so you can read our magazine on your tablet — after all, if you have it you might as well put it to good use!
A NEW TEAM
I was a longtime elite member with another airline but switched to AA about a year ago. In that year, you have earned my loyalty through a collection of experiences that have impressed me. When I inadvertently left my iPhone in a DFW Admirals Club, an American rep jogged through the concourse to bring it to me just before the gate closed for my flight. Speaking of the iPhone, with your AA app, I’m never caught by surprise with a flight delay or flight cancellation. I read American Way regularly and I enjoy the articles and the tone set by the editorial staff. Adam Pitluk and I share the same hometown and went to the same high school. While I’m a little older, I bet we had some of the same English teachers and learned a similar writing style. I appreciate his occasional nods to the suburbs of Cleveland. Thank you, American Way, for making re-entry into work life that much more enjoyable.
A.P. RESPONDS: Welcome to the Good Guy’s Team, Robert. Smart guys like us (that’s Orange High School grads, mind you) expect — nay, demand more — from an airline. That’s why all roads lead to AA, even those that began in Northeast Ohio. Say hi to Abby and Joey for me.