Popping In For a Visit

By Paul Mousseau

October 2016

I was working the tower at Great Falls, Mont., one winter in the mid-1980s. An Air Canada B767 was on the ramp late at night as I was about to leave for home. They were on the ground, crunching some numbers for some sort of cold-weather operation study. I radioed to the cockpit that I had never been on a 767 and they invited me over for a visit that night. They said they didn't have stairs, but "you'll be able to get into the aircraft. Go to the nose wheel and someone will meet you."

OK. Off work, get to the nose wheel and....from the belly of the aircraft, which is about 10 feet off the ground, a hatch opens and out pops this guy's head.

"Get your feet on top of the wheel, and you'll come through this hatch."

Did all that, had a great visit and retraced my steps out. That was the oddest way I ever got on and off an aircraft.