Saturday, August 22, 2009

To fly- or not to fly..

This is the story of a girl, a guy, a plane and a train.
Actually, multiple planes and, since 2001, multiple horror stories to go with each flight. I truly hope that no one forgets what it was like to fly before 2001, when we were all treated like appreciated clients of the airlines instead of possible mass-murderers.

My husband and I are also business partners. That means that when a business trip rears it's sometimes ugly head, we go together, always. We truly enjoy each others company, so that's a good thing.

Our last flight was to Dallas last winter. It was a solid roller coaster ride from beginning to end. At one point we had to pick up a few Pilots at an unscheduled stop because their flights had been canceled due to the weather. One of them sat directly behind me and as we bucked along through the atmosphere hard enough to cause me catch some air between my seat and the plane seat, (thank God for seatbelts) I started hearing an odd but very quiet whimpering noise coming from behind me. I peeked between the seats. The Pilot was gritting his teeth through the horrified rictus that was his face as his white knuckled fingers gripped his armrests hard enough to leave deep claw marks in the vinyl.

That was it. I was done. Done with being treated like an incipient criminal, done with hanging a death defying 30k feet in the air at the mercy of overworked air traffic controllers, underpaid pilots, and unpredictable weather, done with eating nothing but peanuts for 8 hours or more. Done done done.

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