Now Boarding: The Bush Twins

Amid the mess over the weekend for travelers flying from Boston to Washington (lost luggage, delayed flights, etc.), those aboard Saturday's 7 p.m. US Airways shuttle from Logan International Airport -- which had been held up for 20 minutes because of luggage problems -- were surprised when the pilot announced that the plane would make a quick hop to Albany on its way to Reagan National.

"We land in Albany, and the doors open and in come Jenna and Barbara [Bush] and several Secret Service agents," our spy, who declined to be named "for fear of going to Gitmo," told us. "I kept thinking, I haven't heard of anybody diverting planes for all these other people being inconvenienced. This doesn't fit in the norm of airline travel."

But before blame goes to the first daughters, it turns out that it's not unusual for US Airways to make such diversions. "Yes, there are times when we will divert an airplane to pick up passengers off of another canceled flight. We do that when we have no other way to accommodate those customers," said airline spokesman David Castelveter. In addition to the Bush twins, 22 other beleaguered passengers also boarded in Albany.

The shuttle landed in Washington around 10:30 p.m. -- two hours past its scheduled arrival but, as witnesses tell us, time enough for Jenna to be spotted that night carousing at the Georgetown prepster hangout Smith Point.

Noted . . .

Sure, Halle Berry is arguably one of the most beautiful people in the world -- and yet the 37-year-old actress says it's not all it's cracked up to be. While promoting her latest flick, "Catwoman," in London, the unlucky-in-love Berry meowed: "Beauty? Let me tell you something -- being thought of as a beautiful woman has spared me nothing in life. No heartache, no trouble. Love has been difficult. Beauty is essentially meaningless and it is always transitory" . . . The many faces of sexpot Pam Anderson: There's Pam Anderson the Playboy Playmate and Pam Anderson the "Baywatch" babe and Pam Anderson the on-again off-again love to Tommy Lee and Pam Anderson the girlfriend of Kid Rock and Pam Anderson the PETA activist and Pam Anderson the mother. And now there's Pam Anderson . . . the author? Yep. "I love to write," she told the Boston Herald. "And I thought about an autobiography, but everyone was doing that plus I'd rather write fiction. So someone suggested a roman a clef and I was like, who is that?" And thus her "Star" was born . . . Want to know former CIA director George Tenet's secret to success? Now's your chance. The New York Daily News draws our attention to the fact that Tenet's back in the spotlight, according to the Washington Speakers Bureau, which has signed him to its roster (which also includes former U.N. weapons inspector David Kay). Tenet, who assured the president that finding WMDs in Iraq was a "slam dunk," is being billed "as someone with experience leading a large organization, [who] also shows leaders how to galvanize their people, inspire innovation and revitalize the organizational culture -- for dramatic results." No word on how much moola he'll be paid for sharing these helpful hints. Or whether the NBA -- an organization that knows something about "slam dunks" -- will be requesting his services.

. . . and Quoted

"The eighth most impressive Kennedy I've ever met."

-- liberal comedian and satirist Al Franken riffing on Rep. Patrick Kennedy (D-R.I.), son of Massachusetts Sen. Ted Kennedy, during a celebration for the congressman in Boston last week, as reported by Roll Call.

-- Compiled by Anne Schroeder

from staff and wire reports

Richard Leiby is on vacation.

Jenna, left, and Barbara Bush: Stuck in Albany, they managed to catch a ride back to town.Halle Berry: Sitting pretty -- or maybe not.