Enough to take your breath away OR not!
As a pax, sometimes things occur that interrupt the boredom of flying. That something happened to me this last Sunday afternoon on Lufthansa flight 402 into EWR. I was in seat 55C, two rows from the back of a LH 747-400. The inbound flight from Frankfurt had cruised uneventful at 37,000 feet in bumpy skies for 8 hours. The final leg had us turn almost directly south after passing Albany and descending to 16,000 feet (all this info is recalled from the cabin monitors) for an apparent direct landing on runway 22. As we made our final descent in clear skies, the PIC applied a small amount of flaps, started his flair and then at what appeared the last moment before touchdown pulled that Heavy back into the skies, aborted the landing and started a slow climb for a go around. Sitting in that back seat, this change of events was enough to take my breath away until the Captain reduced what seemed a severe angle of attack, leveled the aircraft, completed his go around and landed on runway 29. His roll-out without reverse thrust was less then 3,000 feet.
My wife was watching all of this on flightaware.com/live/ and told me later that at 300 feet she turned away from the screen thinking we were on the ground, then turned back to log off only to see that little plane lifting off into the skies; she could not believe what she was seeing.
Postscript. As one of the last to leave the plane, I spoke briefly with the first officer and he said the Captain encountered 42 knot crosswinds and choose to abort the landing. As I was waiting for a taxi at ground transport, I noticed the Lufthansa Captain, called out to him, shook his hand and thanked him for his judgment, he said “Gern geschehen!”, you’re welcome.