Thursday, October 6, 2011

Diary of a Seasoned Traveler

I only blog profusely during two things, exercising and traveling, probably because they are the two things which most make me uncomfortable and look silly.

In the past, people who'd journey across the globe for the better part of their lives would mark those experiences by writing about them.

I just took a 45 minute connecting flight to Seattle, so I feel pretty qualified! And I obviously like to hear myself talk.

I am sure my longer flights on this trip will elicit much deeper, meaningful insights, especially when I go to England in a few days. But so far, some noticeable things have already jumped out at me. Probably from lack of sleep.

Here's a few of the less insane sounding ones:

1) A lot of you fellow Americans are not having fun. I know it's 5:30 A.M., but come on, folks. Lighten up.

2) When carrying a bag, do not hold it in front or behind of you. It is considered customary to sling it on your shoulder and to the side, so you can bonk the heads of everyone already seated, no matter how much they lean away from the aisle.

3) I do not know when we first started to build these 4 row jets and put them into use commercially, but based on the size of the seats, I am guessing this one was built only 4 or 5 years after the Wright Brothers first invented flight, when most Americans were still less than a foot and a half wide and under 150 pounds.

4) On 4 row planes (2 child-sized seats, an aisle and 2 more child-sized seats), it is so small (and possibly made of plastic), that the ambient noise outside is literally roaring, much louder than normal speaking volume. This is still OK if you need to talk to the person next to you, because their ear is already several inches away from your mouth.

5) I wish I had brought gum.

6) On a plane this size, you will gain intimate knowledge of exactly how uncomfortable it feels to have your body mashed up against a complete stranger for almost an hour... the key word here being "intimate".

7) If there is a fast spinning propeller right outside your window, turning to the already nervous, anxious looking person mashed against you and saying (yelling), "I bet if that snapped off, it would fly right at us and cut this wall in half"... is considered "rude".

8) If the person next to you starts crying, asking for another seat is also considered "rude".

9) Why are we still using planes with propellers?

10) If the propeller and wing parts are only two feet from your window, you not only can see every single screw, bolt and rivet, you will take the time to check each and every one for any that are loose.

11) On a plane this small, even passing close to a bird fart will make the plane jump 3 feet in the air.

12) I watched as the Alaska Airlines stewardesses poured drinks in turbulence worse than an elevator jarring to a stop between floors, their hands and the cups flying up and down with the bumps. At 5:30 A.M. Without spilling a drop and on a short 45 minute flight. They were awesome.

13) I don't think we're supposed to call them "stewardesses".

14) Apparently Alaska now has electricity, running water AND an airline. But they still have propellers.

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