This week, Xinzhou!
[Brisk wind blowing in the background, as in the foreground scraping noises proceed.]
ARTHUR: [Humming.] Wish I had a carrot. [The scraping continues.] Oh, hi, guys!
CAROLYN: [a bit breathless, speaking rapidly] 21 minutes to go. Come on, come on, come on! Where is Martin?
DOUGLAS: His hat blew off.
CAROLYN: Blew off? How did it blow off? It's bigger than he is. Martin!
MARTIN: [in the distance] Yes, I was just coming!
CAROLYN: Leave your blasted hat! [enunciating each syllable distinctly] Nineteen minutes!
MARTIN: [in the distance] Yes, I know - I just - got it!
CAROLYN: Well, come on, then! [lowers the volume, tone becomes earnest] Arthur, is the cabin ready?
ARTHUR: [proudly] Yeah - cargo loaded, food loaded, cabin checked, and I've nearly finished this snowman.
CAROLYN: Why are you building a snowman?
ARTHUR: [in the tones of one stating the obvious] It's snowing.
[sound of footsteps on snow]
MARTIN: Ah. Here I am.
CAROLYN: At last. Can't you get a chin strap for that thing?
DOUGLAS: [with the sound of rolling eyeballs] Don't give him ideas.
CAROLYN: All right - everyone in. [footsteps on metal] Right - eighteen minutes to dusk. Martin, come on! In, in, in!
MARTIN: Yeah, but - but - I - I've just -
CAROLYN: This is not the time or the place to admire the beauty of China in the snow.
DOUGLAS: To be fair, it is the place...
CAROLYN: Douglas, A) shut up, B) go and talk to the tower.
DOUGLAS: But having carried out A, how can I -
CAROLYN: Now. [Door opens and closes.] Right, Martin, do the walkaround.
MARTIN: I was about to do the walkaround and you said in-in-in.
CAROLYN: And now I'm saying out-out-out! Go!
[MARTIN sighs, door opens and closes again, and footsteps on metal fade away.]
CAROLYN: Right, Arthur, get ready for takeoff.
ARTHUR: OK. [quickly inhales, clearly does nothing] Ready!
ARTHUR: So, given that I am ready, and Skip will be a few minutes doing the walk'round, can I very quickly finish my snowman?
DOUGLAS: Xinzhou Tower, this is Golf Echo Romeo Tango India, request start for Fitton.
XINZHOU ATC: Roger, Golf Tango India, clear to start; be advised airfield closes at dusk.
DOUGLAS: [warmly] Thank you, Tower, we know. The scheme we've come up with, and I think you'll admire its simplicity, is to take off before that.
XINZHOU ATC: Golf Tango India, please repeat?
DOUGLAS: [in a businesslike tone] Roger, clear to start.
[Flight deck door opens.]
MARTIN: [clearly very cold] Oo-ooh!
DOUGLAS: Good heavens, it's Frosty the Snow Pilot!
MARTIN: [coughing] OK. I've done the walkaround, but -
DOUGLAS: Well, all's going smoothly in here; oh, except another bit's fallen off GERTI.
MARTIN: [in exasperation] Oh, God, which one?
DOUGLAS: The APU startup's failed.
MARTIN: [tone changes] Oh, no.
DOUGLAS: Luckily, its final act before it expired was to start up the APU. So firstly, it died doing what it loved, and secondly, we're still good to go.
MARTIN: Good. [exhaling] Now, come and look at the snow.
DOUGLAS: I can see it from here, Martin - it's lovely. Sit down, let's go.
MARTIN: No - I'm worried about it.
DOUGLAS: Oh, Martin, no, please -
MARTIN: [reasonably] We'll waste more time arguing about it than looking at it.
DOUGLAS: Right; fine.
[Outdoors, sounds of wind and of footsteps in snow.]
DOUGLAS: [clearly pro forma] Yes; it's absolutely fine. Come on.
MARTIN: No; I - I - I just think it looks a bit slushy.
DOUGLAS: It's not slushy at all; it's lovely, dry, fluffy snow. If it were slushy, I couldn't make a snowball out of it, and yet, look - [sounds of snowball manufacture]
MARTIN: Yeah, but it - it's not a proper snowball, it hasn't got much structural integrity - it [crunch of snowball] orgh!
DOUGLAS: Seems all right to me.
MARTIN: I did know you were going to do that.
DOUGLAS: And yet, you didn't duck.
MARTIN: Yes, but look - if you just scoop it lightly - [noise of scraping snow]
ARTHUR: Oh, that's not fair.
CAROLYN: What isn't?
ARTHUR: Look out the window. [whinging] If there wasn't time for me to finish my snowman, how come Martin and Douglas get to do that?
CAROLYN: Oh, good grief.
MARTIN: See?! It's still spattering before impact! That's why it's not safe -
[Sound of Carolyn walking up.]
CAROLYN: Gentlemen. I hate to intrude on your piloty winter wonderland, [takes deep breath] but we have 11 minutes to get this thing in the air.
MARTIN: Carolyn - I...think the snow on the wings might be too slushy for takeoff.
DOUGLAS: And I think it's absolutely fine.
CAROLYN: And so you're settling it with a snowball fight.
MARTIN: No. You see, slushy snow won't hold its shape in any great volume whereas dry snow -
DOUGLAS: Ah, Martin...
DOUGLAS: Take a look at that. One of Arthur's finest snowmen. You can't make that out of slush.
MARTIN: [the wind taken out of his sails] Oh. Oh. Oh, well, it must be fine, then.
DOUGLAS: Yeah - so everyone back on, we're flying tonight!
[footsteps on metal]
DOUGLAS: Your snowman saved the day.
ARTHUR: [in a lower tone than usual] Brilliant.
DOUGLAS: Tower, this is Golf Tango India, we're at the holding point runway 1-8, ready for takeoff.
XINZHOU ATC: Roger, standby for clearance. [beep]
MARTIN: Yes! We actually did it!
DOUGLAS: We surprisingly did! And with four minutes in hand.
MARTIN: [sniff sniff sniff] That's funny. [(more deliberately) sniff - sniff sniff sniff] Can you - can you smell bacon?
DOUGLAS: [shallow sniff] No...
MARTIN: Really? I c - I can definitely smell bacon.
DOUGLAS: Martin...is this your street way of saying you think there's a policeman on the plane?
MARTIN: No, no, seriously - you - you really can't smell it?
DOUGLAS: [with obvious sincerity] No.
MARTIN: Really? Oh, dear...does it - does it mean something when you smell bacon?
DOUGLAS: Ah, well, that's one for the philosophers.
MARTIN: Seriously - because, because if you think you smell burning toast, that means you might be having a stroke. What're you having if you can smell bacon?
MARTIN: [sighs in exasperation]
CAROLYN: Oi! Drivers! What's going on up there? Are we going or not?
DOUGLAS: Good evening, Carolyns and Arthurs, this is your Douglas speaking. I'm delighted to tell you that four hours in a Chinese traffic jam have not been in vain, and we are awaiting clearance to leave the mysterious Orient and return to the obvious Fitton.
DOUGLAS: I am joined in the flight deck by Martin, who will be your Martin today.
MARTIN: [sounding like his welcoming rehearsals in "Rotterdam"] Hello.
DOUGLAS: Your cabin service attendants will be you, and I have no doubt they will be doing everything they possibly can to make the pilots' flight as peaceful and pleasant as possible.
CAROLYN: [yelling at some little distance] I won't! I shall be fast asleep throughout!
DOUGLAS: [not missing a beat] Which is actually a very good start. So, please sit back, relax -
XINZHOU ATC: Golf Tango India.
DOUGLAS: Roger, Tower?
XINZHOU ATC: Clearance for takeoff - denied.
DOUGLAS: What? Why?
XINZHOU ATC: You have left item [sic] of cargo on your stand. Please return and pick it up.
MARTIN: No, no, no, we haven't - I did the walk around, I'm absolutely certain there was nothing left on the ground.
XINZHOU ATC: I can see it from here - about one meter high, half meter wide, white in colour.
DOUGLAS: It's a snowman! It's just a snowman!
XINZHOU ATC: [more deliberately than before] Please return and pick it up.
DOUGLAS: But we can't possibly do that before dusk!
XINZHOU ATC: Dawn is in eight hours and four minutes. Good night! [beep]
ARTHUR: I'm really sorry.
CAROLYN: It's all right; it's all right.
ARTHUR: It's just a snowman.
ARTHUR: And you've got to remember, it did save the day - before it ruined the day.
CAROLYN: Right. Well, this has been so much fun, let's do it all again tomorrow morning. Douglas, go and sort us out a taxi back to the hotel; Martin, shut GERTI down; Arthur, sit still and don't build any snowmen.
MARTIN: [quietly] Shut the plane down? Douglas?
DOUGLAS: Oh, God.
CAROLYN: What now?
DOUGLAS: The APU starter motor's down, and if we shut it down, we can't start it back up again.
ARTHUR: Oh, no. [pause] What's the APU?
MARTIN: Auxiliary Power Unit.
ARTHUR: Oh, no. [pause] What's the Auxiliary Power Unit?
MARTIN: It powers the plane when the engines aren't on.
CAROLYN: Well. That's all right. We - we won't need any power before we turn the engines back on.
DOUGLAS: Really? And what will we do to start the engines - rub two sticks together?
CAROLYN: So - we have to leave the APU running till dawn.
CAROLYN: And we can't leave the plane with it running.
CAROLYN: So we are all sleeping on GERTI tonight.
MARTIN: OK - so I've put three of the seats back as far as they'll go, [tone shifting from businesslike to positively chipper at being on top of things] and I've got all the blankets out of the emergency kit -
DOUGLAS: How cosy. And who's sleeping in the aisle?
ARTHUR: [instantly] Me! It'll look more fun!
DOUGLAS: Hmm. Well, much as I adore a slumber party, I think I'll just sit in the flight deck and read, actually. I thought I was operating tonight; I've had three coffees.
MARTIN: Ye-es, thing is, though, Douglas, I'm afraid you sort of have to sleep.
MARTIN: Well, we both have to get at least five hours' sleep, or we'll be out of hours to fly tomorrow.
DOUGLAS: Martin, I'll be fine. One night in 1979, I stayed awake for five days.
CAROLYN: [enunciating very distinctly] One night?
DOUGLAS: [nostalgically] And what a night.
MARTIN: Well, nonetheless, legally -
DOUGLAS: Yes, all right -
CAROLYN: [sniff] Arthur? Are you cooking bacon?
MARTIN: Oh - ah! [triumphantly] You see, I told you!
CAROLYN: What did you tell whom?
MARTIN: I told you, I could smell bacon! Douglas said he couldn't.
CAROLYN: Yes, yes, definitely fried bacon. What is it?
MARTIN: I don't know. Can you smell it, Arthur?
ARTHUR: [sniff sniff] Not really, but smell isn't my best sense.
DOUGLAS: Dare one ask what is your best sense, Arthur?
ARTHUR: Oh, touch, definitely! We had this game in Science, once, where you had to work out what things were by feeling them in a bag, and I got nearly all of 'em! Even grapes.
MARTIN: Got any bacon? I really fancy some now.
ARTHUR: No, but I - I could go and do the dinners.
CAROLYN: Oh, yes, I'm ravenous.
MARTIN: Me, too, what are we having?
ARTHUR: Two chicken, two lamb.
MARTIN: Right. Quick as you can.
CAROLYN: I just realized; I'm not going to be back in time for Tosca.
DOUGLAS: Oh dear, that won't go down well with Herc the berk.
CAROLYN: Do you mind not calling him that?
DOUGLAS: I'm sorry - Hercules the berkules?
CAROLYN: Anyway, I wasn't going with him - he's in Zurich.
DOUGLAS: I didn't know Air Cal flew to Zurich.
CAROLYN: They don't; [just a little nervously] he's - um - he's house-hunting.
[Both pilots have now smelled blood in the water.]
MARTIN: Is he?
CAROLYN: [nervously] Mm. Mm. Yes; he might - might move there.
DOUGLAS: Might he?
CAROLYN: Yes! If he wants to.
MARTIN: And might you go with him?
CAROLYN: [rapid-fire] Of course not! Whyever would I?
MARTIN: [reasonably] Well, you have been going out for a year and a half.
CAROLYN: [enunciating very precisely] Sixteen months. [resumes normal tempo] And we haven't been going out; we've just been - often in the same place.
DOUGLAS: How romantic.
MARTIN: So - why might he move to Zurich?
CAROLYN: Well - now look - this is secret, all right? Swiss Airways are launching internationally and they've taken over Air Caledonia, so Herc either has to move to Zurich, or take early retirement.
MARTIN: Swiss Airways is going international?
CAROLYN: Yes, although that wasn't really the focus of my story.
MARTIN: Oh, sorry - it's just - they'll - they'll - they'll be recruiting, then, will they?
CAROLYN: [in a tone of enlightenment] Ah, I see. Yes, yes, and you should apply.
DOUGLAS: Oh, should he?
CAROLYN: Yes, of course he should. I keep telling him he should be looking for other jobs.
DOUGLAS: Do you indeed?
CAROLYN: Yes! I'm fed up with not being able to pay him. He needs to spread his wings.
DOUGLAS: Even as we fold ours.
MARTIN: Do you - not think I should apply, then, Douglas?
DOUGLAS: Oh, I wouldn't say that. You could. I mean, why not? You never know. But they're a prestigious airline.
DOUGLAS: Well, I mean, by all means, throw your hat into the ring. I just wonder if there might be a less intimidating ring to aim for, first time.
ARTHUR: Uh, Mum?
ARTHUR: Quick question. You know those small chickens you get, where everyone has one each?
ARTHUR: What are they called?
ARTHUR: Oh. Not baby chickens?
ARTHUR: Oh. Chaps, you know how we were talking about mistakes?
MARTIN: [in resignation] What have you done?
ARTHUR: And how they happen to all of us and it's just one of those things?
CAROLYN: [in the same tones as Martin] What have you done?
ARTHUR: They should've made it clearer! When I was ordering the catering, there was one called 'baby chicken', and I thought they'd be those little ones, and I love those because you feel like a giant! But they didn't mean that! It meant these...
CAROLYN: So. The catering you have laid on, Arthur, for four people trapped in a plane overnight, is two jars of chicken-flavoured baby food?
ARTHUR: No...that's not all...there's two lamb-flavoured ones as well.
DOUGLAS: What did you think 'baby lamb' was?
ARTHUR: Well, all lambs are baby lambs.
MARTIN: And - and what about breakfast?
ARTHUR: I didn't order breakfast.
MARTIN: Why not?
ARTHUR: I thought we'd be full from dinner.
[sounds of cutlery]
CAROLYN: Ooh, well, I'm stuffed. Very nearly four teaspoons of vaguely chicken-flavoured purée. Oh, I couldn't eat another thing.
MARTIN: [stammering] Are - are - are you sure you're not going to have yours, Douglas?
DOUGLAS: I've rarely been surer about anything.
ARTHUR: I quite like mine. I might get it again. It's nice not having to bother with chewing.
CAROLYN: All right; well, we have feasted; now let us slumber. Shall I turn out the light?
DOUGLAS: No, this is ridiculous. I'm not in the least tired.
CAROLYN: [Click.] Nevertheless. Arthur, say something.
ARTHUR: Ooh! What shall I say?
CAROLYN: Well, anything - just so I know where you are and I don't tread on you getting back to my seat.
ARTHUR: Oh, right! [like sonar pulses, repeated with the same intonation] Here I am, don't tread on me! Here I am, don't tread on me! Here I am, don't tread on me! Here I am, don't tread on me!
CAROLYN: [speaking over Arthur's last sonar pulse] Yes, yes, yes, all right; you're safe. Good night, all.
ARTHUR, MARTIN, DOUGLAS, in ragged chorus: Good night.
[pause, broken only by a couple of throat-clearings]
DOUGLAS: All right, here's a game.
MARTIN: No, no seriously, Douglas - I will not let us fly if we don't get some sleep.
DOUGLAS: This will help us sleep, take our mind [sic] off the discomfort, and the hunger, and the delicious aroma of mysterious bacon.
MARTIN: All right, all right! All right. What game?
DOUGLAS: Question and answer, film double bills.
MARTIN: What'd'you mean?
DOUGLAS: Who Framed Roger Rabbit? Gandhi.
MARTIN: OK. Uhh...uhh...hang on, hang on...
DOUGLAS: Whatever Happened to Baby Jane? Fight Club.
MARTIN: Oh, you always - you always - you always do this; you always - you always save up loads before you announce what the game is.
DOUGLAS: I do no such thing.
CAROLYN: O Brother, Where Art Thou? Notting Hill.
DOUGLAS: Oh, hello; I thought you were asleep.
CAROLYN: I am asleep.
MARTIN: OK, OK, OK. How Green Was My Valley?
DOUGLAS: Seven? Your valley was 'seven' green?
MARTIN: Yes. Out of ten. I think the scale is implicit...
DOUGLAS: Fair enough, OK. [raising his voice] Who Shot Liber-
MARTIN: [interrupting] I don't think this is the sort of game that makes you sleepy.
DOUGLAS: All right; you suggest one, then.
MARTIN: All right. How about Fizz Buzz?
MARTIN: Oh, do you know Fizz Buzz?
ARTHUR: No, but I love the name.
MARTIN: Well, well. You count 'round the circle, but for any number that's a multiple of three, you say 'fizz', and any number that's a multiple of five, you say 'buzz'.
ARTHUR: It's more mathsy than the name makes it sound.
MARTIN: So, i-it's quite, sort of, hypnotic. Let's just try one.
DOUGLAS: All right. One.
DOUGLAS: Well, that was unexpected. [sighs]
MARTIN: No, Arthur, umm, [clears throat] any multiple of three you say 'Fizz'.
ARTHUR: I know, but...three isn't a multiple of three. It's just three.
MARTIN: It's one, three. One time...look, just trust me, OK?
ARTHUR: Five. No...
CAROLYN: Martin, speaking as the woman who spent what felt like most of the 1980s trying to teach Arthur fractions, I suggest you give in gracefully.
ARTHUR: No, no, Skip, it's a good game...it's just a bit...overcomplicated. I know, how about, it's - instead of odd numbers, you say 'fizz', and instead of even numbers, you say 'buzz'.
MARTIN: Arthur, that - that would just be...
DOUGLAS: That does sound quite soporific, though. [pause] Fizz.
MARTIN, very quietly: Buzz.
ARTHUR: [quietly] One, two. [speaks up] Fizz.
MARTIN: [yawning] Fizz.
DOUGLAS, quietly: Buzz.
ARTHUR: [quietly] One, two, three, four, five, six. [speaks up loudly] Fizz.
CAROLYN, quietly: [yawning] Buzz.
DOUGLAS, very quietly: Fizz.
GERTI: [beep, sounding loud in the quiet]
ARTHUR: GERTI's playing!
[We can now tell that a steadily beeping alarm has begun going off, which is still sounding in the background.]
MARTIN: What - what's happening?
DOUGLAS: Is that the APU warning?
MARTIN: Uh, uh, uh, uh, I'll go and see. [rustling]
MARTIN: [still moving away] Sorry, Arthur!
DOUGLAS: I'll come too.
ARTHUR: Ahh! [much faster than on the previous occasion] Here I am, don't tread on me! Here I am, don't tread on me! Here I am -
[Flight deck door opens.]
MARTIN: Yes, it's the APU!
DOUGLAS: Oh, what's up with it now? Isn't it enough we're babysitting the damn' thing?
MARTIN: Well, it says - uh - it's overheating.
DOUGLAS: Of course it is. Dear old GERTI, cover her in snow and she gets a hot flush.
MARTIN: Ohhh - cover her in snow. If the snow is blowing horizontally, uh [looks out window] - which it is - it might be blocking up the inlet.
MARTIN: [Grunt.] Ah. OK, ready. [opening door, sounding remarkably like an opening tin can, noises]
ARTHUR: Good luck, Skip!
MARTIN: Thanks. [Door closes.]
ARTHUR: What's he gonna do?
DOUGLAS: The captain is a man of immense mechanical aptitude, and it is accordingly his plan to fine-tune the running of the AP unit by finding a hole at the back of the plane, and waggling a stick in it.
ARTHUR: Will that work?
DOUGLAS: Oh, yes.
[Door opens. Footsteps on metal as MARTIN re-enters GERTI.]
MARTIN: Done it!
ARTHUR: Well done, Skip!
MARTIN: Ooh! [Door closes.] Give me a hand with my coat, Arthur. [Gasps.] But it - it's gathering up in there pretty fast. I - I tried rigging up a sort of cover for it, but there's nothing to fix it to so it just keeps blowing off.
CAROLYN: [sniff sniff] Ooh. It's that bacon smell again. It must be you, Martin. It was fine until you took your coat off.
MARTIN: [mildly indignant] I do not smell of bacon.
ARTHUR: Ooh, you do a bit, Skip.
DOUGLAS: I still can't smell anything. Perhaps it's one of those shared delusions.
MARTIN: Hang on, hang on, hang on - [sniffs hard twice] it is me! It's my shirt! My shirt smells of fried bacon!
ARTHUR: Oh, yeah! Wow, that's brilliant! You could market those!
CAROLYN: Yes, I - I really don't think he could.
ARTHUR: I'd buy one.
MARTIN: How can my shirt smell of bacon?
CAROLYN: Have you changed your detergent recently?
MARTIN: Not to bacon!
ARTHUR: Have you rubbed any bacon on your shirt?
MARTIN: No! I haven't been near any bacon!
CAROLYN: [with some suspicion] Douglas, you're very quiet.
DOUGLAS: Yes, well, I have nothing to say. It's baffling, I'm baffled.
MARTIN: It's you, isn't it?! You made my shirt all - bacony.
DOUGLAS: I assure you, I haven't touched your shirt. Scout's honour. [Transcriber's note: True, of course.]
CAROLYN: All right! Enough of this; it's one o'clock; you've got six hours left to get five hours' sleep, so get cracking.
DOUGLAS: Have you ever thought of recording a relaxation tape?
[Noises of the crew settling down.]
ARTHUR: Ooh! Can we play more Fizz Buzz?
CAROLYN: No, we cannot! Ready - lights out! [Click.]
ARTHUR: Here I am, don't tread on me! Here I am, don't tread on me! Here I am -[This continues in the background.]
MARTIN: I have to say, Carolyn, it - it - it did seem to work, last time.
CAROLYN: It's moronic. It's just 'fizz' and 'buzz'. [raises voice] Arthur! [He stops.] You're safe!
ARTHUR: OK. [pause] But we can make it more complicated. Like, I know! Instead of the, um, numbers thing, it's, um, if someone says 'fizz', you have to say 'buzz.'
DOUGLAS: That's you, making it more complicated.
ARTHUR: Let's just try it!
DOUGLAS: All right, fizz!
DOUGLAS: It's quite a short game, isn't it?
ARTHUR: Yeah, OK, might need another rule. Um, how about if - if someone says 'buzz', you have to say something?
MARTIN: Like what?
ARTHUR: Uhh - 'Have a banana!'
CAROLYN: No, something sensible.
DOUGLAS: Yes! Heaven forfend the game should be contaminated by silliness...
ARTHUR: Uhh - I can't think of anything else.
CAROLYN: Well, I'm not saying 'Have a banana.'
ARTHUR: It's not 'Have a banana,' it's 'Have a banana!', like the song.
CAROLYN: What song?
ARTHUR: The 'Have a banana!' song. I don't really know it, except for one bit.
DOUGLAS: [singing] 'Let's all, go down the Strand -'
ARTHUR: Y' all [sic] right, Douglas?
DOUGLAS: That's the song! That's where you say, 'Have a banana!'
ARTHUR: [disappointedly] Well, you didn't say 'buzz'.
DOUGLAS: You just - you just made that up!
ARTHUR: Well, I mean, the whole thing's made up, Douglas; it's not like it's the law.
DOUGLAS: Fine. [singing] 'Let's all, go down the Strand -' [not singing] Buzz.
ARTHUR: 'Have a banana!'
MARTIN: Can I - can I just clarify the rules?
DOUGLAS: Oh, goody.
MARTIN: If someone says 'fizz' -
MARTIN: - you have to say 'buzz' -
ARTHUR: 'Have a banana!'
MARTIN: - and if anyone says 'buzz' -
ARTHUR: 'Have a banana!'
MARTIN: - you say 'Have a banana!'
ARTHUR: Right! Yeah! So I'll start - fizz!
DOUGLAS: Carolyn, care to do the honours?
CAROLYN: No; I'm not saying it.
ARTHUR: Go on, Mum, try it; it's really fun to say!
DOUGLAS: Fine. 'Have a banana!'
DOUGLAS: Still not a long one...
MARTIN: Well, what about if there was some sort of external cue - like, um...well, someone says your name? You have to say 'fizz'.
ARTHUR: Oh, that's brilliant, Skip!
ARTHUR: 'Have a banana!' It worked! Skip, you're a genius!
ARTHUR: 'Have a banana!' Now, how did you think of it, Skip?!
CAROLYN: Arthur, will you stop saying Skip?!
MARTIN, DOUGLAS, and ARTHUR: 'Have a banana!'
CAROLYN: Stop it! Stop, stop, stop, all of you!
ARTHUR: Sorry, Mum.
CAROLYN: Ah - ah - ah.
CAROLYN: All right, enough! Two of us have to sleep, and all of us need to, so - no more games, no more chat. We're just going to lie here, quietly, until we drift off gently to sleep.
[Pause, interrupted only by two male sighs.]
GERTI: [APU warning goes off again.]
MARTIN, DOUGLAS, and ARTHUR: 'Have a banana!'
GERTI: [APU warning goes off again.]
MARTIN, sleepily: It's your turn, Douglas.
DOUGLAS: It can't be my turn again.
ARTHUR, sleepily: I haven't had a turn. Can I go?
DOUGLAS: I don't see why not. Follow our footprints in the snow, and it's the hole below the tail about the size of a jam jar. Clear the snow out and come back.
ARTHUR: [Yawns.] Right-o. Brilliant. [Sound of footsteps.] Here I am, don't tread on me. Here I am, don't tread on me....
CAROLYN: It's you moving!
ARTHUR: Oh, yeah. [Considerably more awake now.] OK, back soon! [Door opens. Wind is audible.]
CAROLYN: Turn the light back off after you!
[Light clicks off. Door closes.]
CAROLYN: So is it just going to keep doing this every twenty minutes?
MARTIN: Or as long it keeps snowing, yes.
CAROLYN: Well, can't you do something, Douglas?
DOUGLAS: Such as what?
CAROLYN: I don't know; one of those...things you do. Can't you make some sort of...cover for it?
DOUGLAS: Well, we can't block it while it's in use. That's the whole point, and it's just a hole five foot [sic] up in the side of the plane; there's nothing to hang a cover on.
CAROLYN: Who Is [sic] Afraid of Virginia Woolf? Spiderman.
MARTIN: [Sounding like a classic movie monster] I - am - so - HUNGRY!
DOUGLAS: There's still my jar of baby food, if you want it.
MARTIN: [Perks up.] You're sure you're not hungry?
DOUGLAS: No, I had something at the hotel.
MARTIN: Did you? Well, no one else did. We were all complaining there was no food.
DOUGLAS: Yes, well, I rustled something up.
MARTIN: Did you really? And could that possibly have anything with why my shirt smells of bacon? [Ends with a rising inflection.]
DOUGLAS: How could it possibly have anything to do with that.
MARTIN: I don't know. But somehow...
DOUGLAS: What's Eating Gilbert Grape? Twelve Monkeys.
MARTIN: Uh... Would you really let Herc go to Zurich, Carolyn?
CAROLYN: It's not a question of letting him; he's a grown man.
MARTIN: Well, but would he stay if you asked him to?
CAROLYN, rather deliberately: So I have been led to believe.
MARTIN: So it is a question of letting him.
CAROLYN: Go to sleep.
DOUGLAS: What about you, Martin? If Swiss Airways took you, you'd have to live in Zurich, too.
MARTIN: Oh, I thought I wasn't going to apply, I thought they were too good for me.
DOUGLAS, airily: Oh, I - I didn't say that.
MARTIN: No, you just thought it really loudly.
DOUGLAS: But would you? Move to Switzerland?
MARTIN: If someone would let me fly airliners, I'd live anywhere they wanted me to. I - [Tone becomes more thoughtful.] How far is Zurich from Vaduz?
CAROLYN: Oh, about fifty miles or so, I think. Why?
DOUGLAS: Oh, I see. Duxford went well, did it?
CAROLYN: What's Duxford?
DOUGLAS: Duxford Air Museum is where Martin recently escorted a charming young woman from Liechtenstein. And when I say 'from', I mean 'the princess of.'
CAROLYN: That - snotty woman we flew?
MARTIN: Um, she's - nicer when you get to know her.
DOUGLAS: So? How did it go?
MARTIN: How did what go?
DOUGLAS: Duxford! How was it?
MARTIN: It was excellent, as always.
DOUGLAS, rather suggestively: Learn anything new?
MARTIN: Well, no, it's really aimed at the layperson rather than the professional pilot -
DOUGLAS: I didn't mean about aviation!
DOUGLAS: Well, keep your hair on, I'm not asking for the gory details. [Yeah, right.] But did you get on?
MARTIN: Yes, we did. She was nice. It was a nice day. It was - nice to be with her, she was - very nice.
DOUGLAS: Ah, love. It brings out the poet in us all.
MARTIN: I'm not in love.
CAROLYN: So - are you seeing her again?
MARTIN: Might be, next week?
DOUGLAS: Ooh, the difficult second date!
MARTIN: Yes, well, third, actually.
DOUGLAS: Oh, really? When was the second?
MARTIN: Well, you know when we had that day off in Delhi? She happened to be in Agra.
DOUGLAS: Really? What for?
MARTIN: The - um - [clears throat] King of Sweden's birthday in the grounds of the Taj Mahal, so we - went to that.
DOUGLAS: I see. [Pause.] You took her to Duxford Air Museum, she took you to a private party at the Taj Mahal. Where were you going next week?
MARTIN: Croydon Airport Visitors' Centre.
DOUGLAS: You spoil that girl.
MARTIN: It was her idea!
DOUGLAS: Well, you must certainly apply to S.A., then.
DOUGLAS: Absolutely! Major airline recruiting just down the road from your girlfriend...
MARTIN: She's not my girlfriend.
DOUGLAS: Too good a chance to miss. Even if you don't get in, the interview will be good practice, and if you do, you might even get to fly with someone who... doesn't pinch your travel iron out of your flight bag to fry himself a bacon butty.
MARTIN: I knew it was you!
DOUGLAS: Sorry. I didn't know you were going to use it.
CAROLYN: You know - Arthur's been gone a very long time.
DOUGLAS: Yes, he has, rather.
MARTIN: Lord, he's probably still searching for the inlet. I'll go and get him.
[Door opens. Martin steps out, slowing and stopping immediately.]
MARTIN: Guys? There's - there's someone outside by the tail.
DOUGLAS: Well, that'll be Arthur.
MARTIN: No, no, no - much taller. I think he's - I think he's inspecting the plane!
[Sounds of Carolyn and Douglas rising and joining Martin.]
CAROLYN: Oh, good Lord. Um - [clears throat] Hello? Hello?
ARTHUR: [In the distance, with a falling inflection] Hello!
CAROLYN: Arthur? Is that you?
ARTHUR: [in the distance] Ah - that isn't, but this is! Hello!
CAROLYN: Well, what is that?
ARTHUR: Before I tell you, I promise you I'll knock him down again before we leave.
CAROLYN: Another snowman. Oh, good Lord, it's a compulsion.
ARTHUR: No, it - it's only to keep me busy, because I thought I'd stay out here and keep the intake clear while you guys get some sleep.
CAROLYN: Well, it was a very sweet thought, dear, but you can't possibly stay out here in the cold all night. Now, come on in!
DOUGLAS: Oh! Of course!
DOUGLAS: Arthur can't, but I know who can. Arthur! Put your back against this with me. Now, one, two, three - shove.
ARTHUR: I don't think it moves, Douglas - [sound of moving snow] ooh, it does, though.
CAROLYN: What on Earth are you doing?
DOUGLAS: Getting us some sleep. You see, what Arthur has very cleverly accidentally done - [grunting and shoving noises] - is build us - [grunting and shoving noises] a six foot snow pedestal!
ARTHUR: No, it's a snowman!
DOUGLAS: It's both!
CAROLYN: A pedestal? For what?
DOUGLAS: For the MJN Patent APU Intake Snow Guard! Martin - give me your hat!
MARTIN: What? No!
DOUGLAS: Oh, go on - Swiss Airways'll give you a much nicer one.
MARTIN: I thought you said that was too intimidating a ring to throw my hat into.
DOUGLAS: Did I? Well, I was forgetting, of course, just how intimidating your hat is.
MARTIN: [Groans, but hands over the hat.]
DOUGLAS: There. Covers the hole perfectly. I knew it must be good for something.
ARTHUR: Oh, wow! So hang on, my - my first snowman saved but then ruined the day, but my second snowman, and Martin's hat, and Douglas' idea, and Mum's, uh -
ARTHUR: - aeroplane, saved the night!
DOUGLAS: Exactly, Arthur!
CAROLYN: Oh, what the hell. 'Have a banana!'
Link to John Finnemore's blog entry on the episode: Xinzhou