i fell like i’m pretty high maintenance these days when it comes to flying in an airplane (you know as opposed to using my superpowers?). especially on a recent trip to denver, where i opted to pay forty extra dollars to upgrade to business class.
i reluctantly shelled out the extra cash and was dully rewarded with double credit AND two free drink coupons. did i mention i got to board first? it’s true. right after the handicapped folk.
the reason i say i’m high maintenance is because i can almost never cram my carry-on in the overhead bin alone. i’m sorry to the people behind me (except for this trip when i was boarding…alone…). i also like to take my time ordering my beverages of choice. beverages? yes. “can i get a soda with no ice and a water?”
i’ve flown dozens of times in my lifetime, but this particular flight was chock-full of interesting characters.
there was the woman across the aisle to my left, who was wearing something that resembled a helmet, but covered her eyes. it was very thick. she, before putting on aforementioned helmet-type apparatus, spent some time trying to inflate an orange something or other. it now rested in her lap, hands folded on top. her head was turned toward me…creepy.
then there was the man-on-a-mission sitting in the seat next to me on the right. his attitude, screamed, “hello people. i’m taking your armrests and there’s nothing you can do to get them back. deal with it or i’ll kick you. even though my feet are already partially under the seat in front of you.” sigh.
perhaps the most interesting character of all, was a boy who reminds me of what i picture as a young david sedaris. slightly neurotic, maybe a little add…touching things the right amounts of times and carrying on conversations with himself.
he sat in the row behind me, and at first, i thought he was talking with another little boy, perhaps sitting in the seat next to him. there were questions and answers. but then i realized it was all coming from him. he told himself he did not like flying and listed all the reasons why. he went through a phase repeating the phrase, “oooooooooh a lunch,” over and over and over. when the fasten seat belt sign was turned on or off by the captain, he would mimic the sounds continuously. then he told the clouds, outside, about a dream he had.
“one time, i had this dream that the kids at school were teasing me and i said, ‘oh yeah, well can you fly!?’ and then i jumped up and was flying. every time i jumped i went higher and higher.”
it was kind of great.
i am reading a book right now that talks about how we don’t use our imaginations enough. normally, i would have been super annoyed but it was kind of a neat and beautiful moment to just enjoy this kid acting…well, what society would say was ‘abnormal’. his imagination was running wild. society tells us this type of behavior is wrong and rude, but i embraced this awkward 12 year olds antics.
the woman sitting in the window of my row, did the neatest thing at the end of the flight, after this kid shot all the clouds on the way down. she turned around and said, ‘you make the neatest sound effects. how did you know to make those noises?’ i loved it!
so that brought my flight to a happy close. i heard the kid coming down the walkway saying, ‘no not denver! anywhere but denver!’ and just laughed to myself, and was happy to have experienced someone that refreshingly was just…himself.