Early in the morning of Sept 11th 2001 I boarded a Ryanair Boeing 737-200 at Bristol airport for a short 45 minute flight to Dublin, It was the first ever flight I had taken by myself and indeed also the first overseas trip I had been on by myself.
I ended up amongst the first on the plane and took the very front row opposite the stewardess, I had read about how pilots often quite welcome people with an interest in planes into the cockpit during the flight so I was so tempted to ask the stewardess right in front of me if that was possible, but I was too shy back then to ask!
Little did I know then that was probably my last ever chance to ever visit a commercial passengers Jet cockpit in flight as around 5 hours later the horrors of 9/11 unfolded in New York & Washington & Pennsylvania.
That day 9 years ago today would change the world and flying forever, Its an amazing co-incidence that that happened to also be the day of my first flight and travels by myself, and I think it gave me some extra inspiration to fly and travel as I thought F**k the terrorists they wont win.
Just 7 weeks later I was on another plane this time heading to New York!