A WW2 RAF friend once said "It wasn't until about 1942 that some dumb-*** invented crosswinds.' Prior to that time, even bombers took off from and landed at grass airfields and could always line up with the wind.
I took a flight from Plymouth, UK to Gatwick a few years ago on a Brymon Airways Twin Otter. Brymon operated single pilot, and the right seat on the flight deck was actually a revenue seat. I presented my Boeing business card at check-in and asked for that seat.
The captain came into the waiting area. introduced himself and invited me to accompany him on the pre-flight inspection. As we taxied away from the gate, I was looking at the rather gusty conditions and wondering what the Twin Otter's crosswind limitations were. A short distance from the gate, the Captain asked for permission to taxi over the grass, which was approved.
We taxied along the airport boundary until we reached the heading marker that faced into the wind. "Brymon 772 ready for take-off" the Captain reported. "772 - take-off approved" replied the tower. By the time we got to the runway we were at about 1200 feet!
It was different at Gatwick. There was a Laker DC-10 following us. The tower asked if we could make the first turn-off to clear the DC-10's approach. The Captain said "Negative, Gatwick Tower, but I'll fly down to the other end and get out of his way". We didn't touch down until we were about 500 feet from the end of the runway and we were at the gate before the DC-10 touched down.
I suspect that kind of flexibility isn't common these days!
Frank and Eileen
No longer RVers or FR owners