Displaced Yankee Productions | In the Air

In the Air

It’s 12:43 am in the morning and there’s a complete stranger reclining in my lap. This of course perhaps requires a bit more explanation. By the airline. Which touted on their website big beautiful new planes with LCD screens in the back of every seat. I am here to tell you this plane makes southwest seem like first class. This plane was new. Somewhere around the year 1970. The seat in front of me is reclined so far back I feel like I’m dating the passenger in 50B. Not much room under the seats. So little in fact Theresa put her carry on above us. Now we’re at 25,0000 feet and have discovered that bag contains her glasses, her cell phone (still on) and the splitter we were going to use to share the portable DVD player. Now this might be a crisis since it’s 13.75 hours till Taipei. But lucky us! The plane has to make an unscheduled stop in a couple of hours in Seattle because the headwinds are so bad we need extra fuel. Yeah, like I said, lucky us….
Two hours later, we’ve arrived in Seattle. We’re both still trying to make sense of it. Fly two hours to land and refuel for an hour. Why not just fill the gas tank in Los Angeles? But I digress…
Theresa and I take this opportunity to stretch our legs for the long leg ahead. First, however, we must get past the woman in the aisle seat, cocooned up in her blanket sound asleep. I gently nudge her and motion we need to get out. She nods in understanding and then moves her feet about a half a centimeter to the right and promptly tunes us out. Unlike Theresa, who goes to yoga, I sadly lack the flexibility to gracefully vault over our traveling companion. So my dismount into the aisle left much to be desired. We took over the section by the emergency exit to flex our cramping bodies, and this only two hours in. Theresa decides she needs another blanket to help pad the uncomfortable seats and saunters off in search of assistance. She’s back a few minutes later with a bemused expression. Apparently the stewardess in the back is reading a “how to” manual, perhaps ‘So you want to be a flight attendant’ – not the most reassuring sight. But it’s time to take off again and so we vault back over the woman in our aisle and settle in.
…. We’ve entered the twilight zone. Fourteen hours has never seemed so long. It’s hard to believe we have another layover in Taipei. I point this out to Theresa but it’s not very appreciated. Five bad movies, one questionable dinner of “bacon” and “chicken” and a random giant container of Raman noodles later, we’re finally there. Then it is back through security to get to our connection to Phonem Pehn. As we arrive at our gate, we realize we left our pillow on the plane. The 24 hours back will not be nearly as pleasant.

 
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