Monday, April 19, 2010

The Stick Up

$25…..$25! I remember when I could check two bags plus take a carryon for free. $25= one bag and a carryon. Money pried from my little hands even before I enter the airport. $25. My age is apparent from the number of free things that once were free to fliers versus the things must now be paid for when flying. Progress? I’m asking…..is this progress?

They took my small Swiss army knife. I know. I shouldn’t have packed it but forgot that it was a staple in my purse. Confiscated. Of course, I have tweezers, nail clippers and a cord on my earphones that passed. Hey, I could do some serious damage. But instead they take my 2” knife. “We can send it to you for $12,” said the man holding my little red purse essential. $12! The knife was a promotional gimmick…a free giveaway. I refuse to increase its current value $12. So little knife that I have carried around for the last eight years is gone.

A friend was once pulled aside on a return trip after Christmas holidays with her family. She and her husband were taken to a small room where her new (Christmas gift) craft glue gun, all of about 4”, was placed on the desk. She was informed that she could not take the ‘weapon’ on the plane. It was a sticky situation. As she told us, my mind ran the scenario “This is a stick up. I need an outlet?” A backup of glue sticks could be stuck into her vest ready to glue anyone who got in her way. Oh, I am thankful for airport security and the lengths they go to in protecting us. Sometimes I just need to giggle.

Through the gate in record time. No one should be up at this time of day so why would anyone be here. Downed a Bonine for airsickness, a pill for shrinking sinuses and placed my earplug in my left ear to see if this newfound theory in reducing airsickness truly works.

The plane is packed. I am in group 5. Groups 1-4 have already gone onto the plane. First Class already has read the Oregonian and downed their first drink. It’s not even 7:45am. I wonder as I walk down the aisle why in the front section of ECONOMY several people are already seated. Hm. Did I miss something?

“Please turn off all media, all technical devices, anything with batteries.” We are ready to taxi. The announcement has been made twice. The girl across from me continues to text. The attendant walks down the aisle stopping next to said girl. “Mame, are you deaf or just short on brain cells.” Well, she didn’t really say those words; they were just going through my head. The ‘no longer stewardess’ tactfully spoke to the young woman. The texting stopped.

“We will be serving bread and water in just a few minutes. The bread is free and day old, but you must pay for the water.” Again, I am rewording the announcement. I could get a free drink but would need to pay for chips. How lucky can you get? Was it all that many years ago that I could get a warm meal for free???? Should I write a book on the good old days of flying so no one forgets? Ah, gone. Peanuts and chips are only for the wealthy.
Monday, April 19, 2010
The Stick Up

$25…..$25! I remember when I could check two bags plus take a carryon for free. $25= one bag and a carryon. Money pried from my little hands even before I enter the airport. $25. My age is apparent from the number of free things that once were free to fliers versus the things must now be paid for when flying. Progress? I’m asking…..is this progress?

They took my small Swiss army knife. I know. I shouldn’t have packed it but forgot that it was a staple in my purse. Confiscated. Of course, I have tweezers, nail clippers and a cord on my earphones that passed. Hey, I could do some serious damage. But instead they take my 2” knife. “We can send it to you for $12,” said the man holding my little red purse essential. $12! The knife was a promotional gimmick…a free giveaway. I refuse to increase its current value $12. So little knife that I have carried around for the last eight years is gone.

A friend was once pulled aside on a return trip after Christmas holidays with her family. She and her husband were taken to a small room where her new (Christmas gift) craft glue gun, all of about 4”, was placed on the desk. She was informed that she could not take the ‘weapon’ on the plane. It was a sticky situation. As she told us, my mind ran the scenario “This is a stick up. I need an outlet?” A backup of glue sticks could be stuck into her vest ready to glue anyone who got in her way. Oh, I am thankful for airport security and the lengths they go to in protecting us. Sometimes I just need to giggle.

Through the gate in record time. No one should be up at this time of day so why would anyone be here. Downed a Bonine for airsickness, a pill for shrinking sinuses and placed my earplug in my left ear to see if this newfound theory in reducing airsickness truly works.

The plane is packed. I am in group 5. Groups 1-4 have already gone onto the plane. First Class already has read the Oregonian and downed their first drink. It’s not even 7:45am. I wonder as I walk down the aisle why in the front section of ECONOMY several people are already seated. Hm. Did I miss something?

“Please turn off all media, all technical devices, anything with batteries.” We are ready to taxi. The announcement has been made twice. The girl across from me continues to text. The attendant walks down the aisle stopping next to said girl. “Mame, are you deaf or just short on brain cells.” Well, she didn’t really say those words; they were just going through my head. The ‘no longer stewardess’ tactfully spoke to the young woman. The texting stopped.

“We will be serving bread and water in just a few minutes. The bread is free and day old, but you must pay for the water.” Again, I am rewording the announcement. I could get a free drink but would need to pay for chips. How lucky can you get? Was it all that many years ago that I could get a warm meal for free???? Should I write a book on the good old days of flying so no one forgets? Ah, gone. Peanuts and chips are only for the wealthy.

I pulled out my computer to do some blog writing. All set up and ready to go. Oops! Spoke too soon. The woman in the seat in front of me decides to put her seat back. My monitor screen is impossible to see unless I bend over and turn my head sideways. With elbows pinned to my side and my chin on my chest, I write these words.

My next stop is bid D, little A, double LL, A, S. It’s supposed to be raining there. I am dressed for seasons in all parts of the country. I will never be too hot or too cold; however, I may get a hernia from lifting my bag.

Tonight I will see my sister. I will be glad that I made this long flight to Key West. I am count on finding my bag at my destination and hope to get out of the airport before someone else asks me for more money.

Ah, the good ‘ol days. Where in the heck did you go?

Oh, by the way, don’t ask for a pillow.

2 comments:

  1. Too true! But I, the eternal optimist, must point out that when I was a really small girl, no one I knew ever flew anywhere. Flying was for the wealthy and for business travelers. At least we are the right age to have enjoyed that small window when flying was affordable and the Salisbury steak was free!

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  2. I am so happy to 'see' you this morning! I missed you and am you're back writing your story.

    This made me giggle. I flew one of those 'Extra-Economy-no-frills-whatsoever' airlines last summer. Bread and water, indeed! I joked to my husband as we were going through security that soon they'll have us all wearing hospital gowns when we fly.

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