I was something in the 60s but now I'm just sixty something.

Leaving on a Prop Plane

on October 6, 2012

Just three planes and I”m home!

I just had the joy of flying across the country and back in one of America’s luxurious airliners. I needed to travel to a small airport which has limited service but an abundance of fog. This meant multiple legs on the trip and an extra hour of circling the runway at midnight in a really loud prop jet hoping the fog would lift so as not to have to land 90 miles away and board a bus. This kind of stuff can’t really be helped so although it’s added misery I made up my mind to just grin and bare it.

But we all know air travel could be improved.

I’m not going to run on with the usual gripes about the airlines: the way we are crammed in, the lack of food and drink, and the surliness of so many flight attendants. You know what the problems are. I am used to bringing my own food and plenty of water because I can count on the airlines not to offer me any. Three ounces of water is not sufficient to ward off dehydration on a five and a half hour flight.  I don’t mind bringing my own but I figure they could at least come by with the trash bag. Most of the time I see the attendants sitting in their little service area eating their own lunch. I hate to interrupt them by handing them my trash but there really is no room to keep it in the seat pocket. That space is already taken by my knees.

Neither am I going to say much about the TSA although I can’t understand how you can get through security quicker at LAX than at an airport that has four outbound flights a day. In such a small airport the TSA doesn’t really have much to do so they go through everyone’s luggage right as it’s checked. Helps with the boredom. I really don’t like people perusing my dirty laundry (literally or metaphorically). And I absolutely hate it when I have to stand there and watch. I prefer to be humiliated anonymously. Do I need someone to judge my underwear?

The real problem though, as I see it, is the other travelers. Rudeness rules the day. So does poor hygiene. People are just nasty these days in all possible ways. And animals? I love animals and have sat near dogs many times. They are usually better behaved than their owners. But I draw the line at having to smell cat pee for five hours. The smell of cat pee is exactly why I don’t have a cat. This was the first time I ever saw a cat on a plane and I hope I never have to smell see one again.

And what don’t people get about “a small personal item”? This does not mean a backpack that would be a challenge for a marine to carry. Or one that bounces off the heads of everyone already seated on its’ way down the aisle. And yes, shopping bags count. Not really a carry on?  Yeah, right. It’s packed with more stuff than checked baggage. What useless stuff are all these people buying on vacation? Planes are SMALL folks. Really small. And no one is that special.

Did anyone learn anything on “Watch Mr. Wizard”? If not, here’s a science lesson for you: gas expands at high altitudes. If you have a sealed bag of something like chips or crackers you will notice the bag will blow up full and tight. You can pop it like a balloon. The gas in your stomach expands too. But unlike the sealed bag there is a way out for intestinal gas subjecting all aboard to recycled farts for hours on end. That little air blower over your head doesn’t get any new air once those doors are closed in preparation for take off. So everybody keep on bringing those fast food fries and onions on board so we can all breathe them in both before and after they are consumed. The smells blend in nicely with the germs from all the coughing and sneezing. Best to pack something to hold over your nose and get a flu shot.

Who do the airlines think they are kidding when they say “sit back, relax, and enjoy the trip”? It actually pisses me off to hear that. Just hurry up and come by with the beverage cart. Then I can buy some alcohol to get through the whole ordeal.

8 responses to “Leaving on a Prop Plane

  1. Gary Brown says:

    Oh, Philis, I remember that airport so well. Many times delayed due to deer on the runway, snow, fog, etc. One memorable trip was a home for the holidays flight. Was delayed due to the previously mentioned deer, which caused me to miss my connector in Philly. Air[ort rep said I could spend the night in Philly (not a thrill at all) or, fly to Logan in Boston and catch a connector to Albany from there. I naturally chose option 2, arrived at Logan to find my connector had left 5 minutes ago. Ended up contacting Wally as he was at school there still with one exam to go. Drove home the following day with him as I had had my fill of planes.
    Love your writing. Very talented and entertaining!

    • sixtiestosixties says:

      Deer on the runway? And they couldn’t get them off? Don’t they just pretty much shoot everything there?

  2. Joe says:

    You did not mention screaming, ill behaved kids!

  3. Scott Miner says:

    Hahaha, Philis, I’m so glad you posted again! Watch Mr. Wizard, wow what a memory! I recently traveled by air and for the first time in a long time, checked my bag instead of carrying it on. It was actually annoying to see people stuffing two and three large over the limit carry on bags into the less than ample overhead bins. Worse, were the people who sat forward, but because they had so many items, had to put some of their bags in the overheads halfway back. Then, when the plane landed, they caused delays in deplaning while they struggled against the flow of exiting passengers to retrieve whatever they had crammed in further back.
    Here’s an idea…how about letting passengers check bags for free, and charging a fee for carry on luggage? I’m sure it would make for more on time takeoffs and smoother boarding/deboarding processes…..

  4. Denise says:

    Ok, so I have to add my two cents too!! I recently had the good fortune of flying as well…. I spent extra money for preferred boarding, which usually saves time and most headaches…however, there is always at least ONE person who manages to think it also means privileged and beyond reproach..ha! I had all I could do to hold myself back to not just SLAP her. She too had preferred boarding for one child (due to some alleged medical condition, probably a mental health one caused by her mother)…but was too cheap to pay for the rest of her family. Consequently, she decided it meant that she could save seats for the rest of her family. Did I meantion they were in the last section to board???? Yes, the spouse sat next to me… pray for him….. he lost the boarding passes for their connecting flight and she berated him in front of their children but all the other passengers in the surrounding area (plane)… needless to say it made for such a relaxing flight.

  5. sixtiestosixties says:

    Sounds like a classy bunch.

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