i checked in online for my flight to seattle from denver and printed my boarding pass. 17C - not bad! not bad for a normal sized airplane. but my flight ended up being on a mini-plane - 4 seats across - 2 each side and row 17 = back row. you know, the very upright seats that don't recline? in a movie theatre or a lecture, back row is good - you can make out or sneak out. but in a small aircraft you are trapped. right next to the only lavatory on the plane. no galley to provide a waiting area for passengers queued up to make their bladder gladder. no, just my airspace. um, excuse me, that's your ASS IN MY FACE! and what about the woman waiting for the bathroom with a maxi pad in hand. at least it was a fresh new pad, but maybe, stick that in your pocket while you are in public? i don't think anyone joined the mile high club on this flight - i'm pretty sure i would have known.
two other items of note about the back row - the flight attendant jump seat is in between the two aisle seats. meaning when she (or he) is strapped in, it's like you are in a middle seat. especially if the flight attendant is not a small person and she is wearing a lot of icky perfume. she was very nice and had a great smile, but no sympathy for us back row dwellers. also, i could have sworn we were on a prop plane. it is freaking LOUD back there! and my ipod battery was out of juice and there were no audio options on this plane. just the engine noise, the rattling of the loose overhead compartments and my citta vrtti.
my seatmate directly in front of me thought he'd use the 3 hour flight for a snooze, so he laid back into my lap. (am i the only one who only reclines one notch on the plane so as not to invade the space of the person behind me?) i thought about giving him a nice shoulder and scalp massage, but if i have to suffer thru this flight, then so should he! my sunglassed seatmate to my right, at the window, had a bottle of booze that she was trying to secretly nip on, but i was onto her. what do i care that she's a thrifty alcoholic, bringing her own, instead of paying $6 for a crappy cocktail.? drink up - no need to hide it. sharing is nice, too.
also in the row in front of me was a microsoft executive who was going thru hundreds of unread work emails on her laptop. i had a good view of her inbox and she didn't seem to appreciate some of the feedback her colleagues were providing on a presentation she put together. she was angrily pounding out responses. i'm glad i wasn't in the seat in front of her that was attached to her tray table. i'd like to add that all the emails she read were very professional and there was not one glimmer of personality or enthusiasm in any of them. not an exclamation point to be found.
catty corner to my seat were two french mademoiselles. they provided some cultural entertainment, as i tried to decipher their conversations. they played some cards (french playing cards are the same as you'll find in vegas - no translation necessary of suits and numbers). i found it interesting that one of the girls had an electronic book reader (like a kindle) and was reading a book in french. not sure why that surprised me. what also surprised, or rather, appalled me, was when both ladies whipped out fingernail files and proceeded to file their nails on the airplane! gross! i don't need to breathe in your discarded body particles! if you know me, you know i have a disdain for certain public grooming.
otherwise, my flight was uneventful, although we deplaned on the tarmac. in seattle. in the rain.
lastly, my rental car clerk hinted that she got off work at 11pm (wink wink) if i needed any ASSistance, which i suppose was flattering.
all was redeemed when i got to my hotel and my man had sent an absolutely gorgeous bouquet of gerbera daisies to my room (my favorite!) and when i spent the evening with friends whom i hadn't seen in a few years who prepared my a lovely dinner of oysters rockafeller, crab cakes and a salad of fresh greens that they picked from their garden immediately prior to putting them on my plate. it was a lovely way to reconnect with my people and with nature. the wine was quite nice, as well.
there's a lesson in this day. i'm sure i'll figure out what it is. oh wait - i think i just did. thank you.