While we were in the US most days took usual shape. However, one or two odd things happened. One occurred on our shorter flight (just under 2 hours) between New York and Chicago. As we were seated on UA755 Carol asked me if I smelt burning. I detected a very slight smell and dismissed it. An hour into our flight which had left on time the captain announced we were returning to New York. Somebody was unwell and there was a maintenance problem. Finding a doctor on board quickly resolved the medical problem - the young lady returned to the seat behind us saying it was just nausea. But....the maintenance problem continued.
Returning, we were told the plane was being taken out of service because...guess what? The oven was faulty and a new oven had to be fitted. It had been smoking! Carol was right. Of course. Waiting in the departure lounge, with a drip feed of sometimes contradictory information we were eventually informed the same plane was being refitted so that we would be flying on it after all. Bottles of water and snacks were provided to keep us going for the five hours' wait.
It is tedious to relate how the flight was further delayed on the runway and the luggage took ages to appear at baggage claim. The journey had taken as long as between London and New York. Deplaning, Carol mentioned to a stewardess that she had smelled burning when we first sat down. 'If only you had mentioned it!' she said. Would it have made any difference? We shall never know.