Con Air

My photos from todayToday, I was in Stornoway on the sunny isle of Lewis, my first flight out west since Flybe took over the Loganair franchise.

However, most interestingly, joining the usual motley crew of overweight, balding public sector middle managers (I discount myself, naturally) on the early flight out this morning were two security contractors escorting a prisoner.

I could imagine why someone would be escorted from the islands to the court or prison in Inverness, but not in the other direction.

No matter, they seemed to be enjoying themselves – the three of them were chatting away like old friends (which of course they may well have been… what a context for a reunion). Annoyingly, they got to board first. I wondered whether the handcuffs had to be removed before going through security…

Then after a day’s meetings and a quick photo-amble around town, I headed to the airport and lo and behold, the same prisoner and his chaperones were there ready to board the home-bound flight. By this stage they were having some great banter, and by the time we were in the air again they were roaring with laughter.

Most intriguing. I have no idea what was so funny and wasn’t sitting close enough to listen in. Perhaps the whole thing was a strange bet or something. It reminded me of the mindless but enjoyable Nicholas Cage film Con Air, when a bunch of prisoners take over a plane.

Although of course the big con of the day was £200 for a flight over the Minch.

Some things don’t change…

3 thoughts on “Con Air

  1. I recall a similar experience a couple of years ago, on the Orkney – Inverness flight (I think – we were on our way back from Shetland). On that occasion the convict and his escorts seemed to be getting on like best mates too.
    The most bizarre thing though was that the plane was pretty empty and all of the other passengers had been allocated seats at the front of the plane, whilst we (Jane, me and 5 month old baby) were placed at the back with the convict. It would appear that babies and convicts were viewed as equally undesirable.

  2. Possibly a remand prisoner getting some kind of ‘compassionate leave’. My brother works for a well known ‘security contractor’. He took the job as a temporary thing a few years ago and he really enjoys it, partly because of the ‘personal’ contact! And yes there are occasions when escorts and prisoners get on well … the sort of trip you witnessed is definitely the ‘soft’ end of the job, but you need to balance it with all the dreadful stuff (he sees plenty of that too).

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