The German air controllers at Frankfurt Airport are a short-tempered lot.
They not only expect one to know one’s gate parking location, but how to get there without any assistance from them. So it was with some amusement that we (a Pan Am 747) listened to the following exchange between Frankfurt
ground control and a British Airways 747, call sign “Speedbird 206”:
Speedbird 206: “Top of the morning, Frankfurt, Speedbird 206 clear of the active runway.”
Ground: “Guten Morgen. You vill taxi to your gate.”
The big British Airways 747 pulled onto the main taxiway and slowed to a stop.
Ground: “Speedbird, do you not know where you are going?”
Speedbird 206: “Stand by a moment, Ground, I’m looking up our gate location now.”
Ground (with arrogant impatience): “Speedbird 206, haff you never flown to Frankfurt before?”
Speedbird 206 (coolly): Yes, I have, actually, in 1944. In another type of Boeing, but just to drop something off. I didn’t stop.”