Inspiration for Andrea’s Fault, by Chris Heider

Eight years ago, on my second leg from Dayton International Airport to Logan International Airport in Boston, I had the privilege of meeting the lovely woman in the photo below on a flight out of Charlotte, North Carolina. My daughter, Caroline, was graduating from Providence College in Rhode Island in mid-May. Naturally, I wanted to be there and chose to fly, not drive.
As things turned out, it was one of the most memorable and joyful trips I’ve ever been on. Caroline graduated with honors from PC and it was great being there to celebrate the experience with our immediate family. I’m even more excited to be the Father of the Bride at her upcoming August wedding. She’s definitely found herself a keeper in Sam Statkas.
The flight from Charlotte to Boston was equally joyful albeit in a manner I never anticipated. So much so, that I was inspired to write, in my humble opinion, one of my best songs (if not the best) I’ve ever written and recorded. That flight rocked my world. A thundering earthquake that began and ended on the ground and rolled effortlessly in the air. The kind of earthquake that shakes you to your core when you’re madly in love. I named it, “Andrea’s Fault.”
I had to run through Charlotte’s airport to catch my flight. A delayed flight out of Dayton was the culprit. I was, quite literally, the last person to board the plane. They were about to close the aircraft door when I called out to them to wait. Fortunately, an order was given to halt. For whatever reason, I was meant to be on that flight. So was Andrea Pernstitch.
I thanked the ticket attendant and hurried down the breezeway and entered the plane. The flight attendants were very gracious and made me feel welcome. Then things got weird. In a good weird kind of way.
As I turned right to head down the airplane isle, I immediately had the sensation that I was walking into a dreamlike state. Ive never experienced anything like that before or since. It wasn’t a deja vu moment. This was a prolonged state of out of body consciousness.
As I made myself thin walking down the isle, I felt like I was walking in a cloud. Although the event of meeting Andrea hadn’t happened yet, it felt as if it already had. That I was simply repeating it. I’d been here before. Seen this. Done this. It was the strangest thing I’ve ever experienced. Surreal, but in a good way.
I had only glanced at my ticket one time to confirm the gate I was departing from. But I knew exactly where I was supposed to sit without ever knowing my seat number. The dream I was walking in showed me the way.
Prior to arriving at my seat, I visualized seeing two beautiful women with the middle seat between them vacant. They were seated in the window and isle seats forward of the jet’s engine on the left hand side of the plane. I instinctively knew what I was going to say when arrived at my destination. In fact, I actually heard myself speaking the words inside my head before I actually spoke them. I got a kick out of myself before I actually spoke the words in real time and proceded to get the same kick out of myself when I spoke them for real.
As I walked, I locked eyes with the woman seated in the isle seat. She was drop dead gorgeous. The dreamlike state and real time slowly began to merge when I pointed with my left hand and said to her, “Miss, I believe that’s my seat.”
Never in my life had I ever flown on a plane sitting beside such beautiful woman. Nor have I since. The young lady sitting by the window was probably 30 years younger and she was also stunningly beautiful. As the lovely woman in the isle seat rose to let me slip in beside her, I permitted my eyes to disengage with hers long enough to make my way to the middle seat and sat down.
As I passed her, I spoke the words I’d already heard echoing sarcastically and playfully in my head seconds earlier: “Oh, I WOULD have to sit between TWO beautiful women on my trip to Boston!” Both women and I got a good chuckle out of that and it was there that the dream ended. As I got comfortable in my seat, I remembered thinking to myself, “Thank you, Jesus!!!”
All bags securely stored, the plane began to pull away from the gate and taxied to the runway. I spoke long enough with the young lady sitting by the window to learn that her boyfriend recently popped the question. Unfortunately, the wedding was postponed until he returned from Afghanistan. She had no doubt he would. He was one of the best. I expressed my gratitude and concerns for both of them and wished her well.
From that point onward, my lovely eight-year Facebook friend, Andrea Pernstitch, and I began a conversation that didn’t stop until we finally parted company at baggage claim in Logan Airport. The conversation was smoothe. Effortless. From one topic to the next. Andrea was a great listener. The depth of her beauty, inside and out, knocked me off my feet.
Less than two years after my divorce in 2014, I thought I’d finally met my one and only, despite the fact that I was nowhere near being ready for the life-long loving relationship I desperately craved. I liked thinking Andrea was as into me as I was into her. I told her I was a retired high school history teacher turned professional singer-singwriter and performer. She was visiting a friend from Connecticut but worked as a Real Estate agent in Charlotte.
As we talked, Andrea mentioned a friend was picking her up at Logan Airport and they were headed to Connecticut from there. But, not once during our non-stop conversation did she let on that she had a boyfriend. And, I was so immersed in the conversation that it never occurred to me to ask if she did. I felt as if I’d died and gone to Heaven.
Pardon the pun but, as the saying goes, “Time flies when you’re having fun.” To this day, that was the shortest flight I’ve ever been on. Andrea’s company and our blissful conversation was made even more angelic because she spoke with a beautiful Austrian accent. As the song states, “The Sound of Music. Paradise.”
After the plane touched down and came to a roaring halt, Andrea and I rose from our seats and said almost at the same time, “For some reason I feel like I was meant to meet you.” One of those “Jinks on you, you owe me a Coke, no backs” moments. We exchanged business cards and continued talking all the way to baggage claim. The site where the raw beginnings of the song began to take form in my mind.
You see, Andrea’s checked bag arrived with our flight. For whatever reason, mine did not. But, the good folks at Logan confirmed it would be on the next flight from Charlotte which was due to arrive in an hour. I laughed to myself and thought, “Well, you just got yourself a song, Andrea Pernstitch. And it’s all your fault.” San “Andrea’s Fault!”
There were no seats in the baggage claim area at Logan. So, I sat down on the hard concrete floor, pulled out my pen and a notebook, and began writing down everything I could remember about my discussion with Andrea. I texted her and told her about my bag and indicated that a song was percolating in my head about our experience. I’m pretty certain it was in that text that I revealed the song’s title – “Andrea’s Fault.”
I’ve had many wonderful experiences with women in my life. Some not so much. But, with the wisdom that only comes with age and experience, I’m happy to say I’m grateful for each and every one of those experiences. I haven’t met the woman of my dreams yet, at least not that I’m aware of. I’m confident I will, however. In its own good time.
I hope you enjoyed reading this story as much as I’ve enjoyed recalling the details telling it. As of this writing, Andrea and I have not yet met again, as I suggest we will in the song. But, those were my words, not hers. She owes me nothing.
For reasons I can’t explain, I was given the gift of her presence on a flight from Charlotte to Boston back in May, 2016. I confess winning her love was once a goal of mine. But, no longer. What I got was something even better.
I received a bond of friendship that surpasses the distance of space and time. The song brought immense joy to both of our lives. It continues to bring joy to all those who listen as I perform it. Whether Andrea and I meet again or not, that bond will never be severed.
Thank you, Facebook, for this eight years ago memory reminder. It was a real joy revisiting the story and sharing it with others.
I hope you enjoyed this story. If you’re interested, I’ve posted links to Andrea’s Fault on my Spotify account and YouTube pages in the succeeding post. Thanks for reading along!
Chris Heider
Facebook Memory – Celebration of EightI Years of Friendship

PS You can access the song, Andrea’s Fault, here on my website under All Things Music/Original Songs. You can also access three videos of me singing the song under All Things Music/Videos. It’s also available with lyrics on my Spotify page. There’s a link to my Spotify page on my website. Please SUBSCRIBE to all of my website pages and links! Thanks so much!

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