Wednesday, August 22, 2007

love the middle seat

So I'm back in Calgary (again) for a few days to celebrate a special occasion. I feel like I've seen the inside of airports a lot this summer...

I left yesterday afternoon and as I was flying standby, had to be there 3 hours ahead of my flight. The last few times I've flown standby, I've been "cleared" for the flight when I've checked in and immediately been given a seat ("aisle if possible please"...I've learned the hard way that if you are travelling by yourself, it is no fun to have to wake two people up because you have to pee). This time, there were too many seats sold to clear me right away, and SOMEHOW, I wasn't the first, but the 5th person to check in (and I checked in 2 minutes after I was allowed to...I think the family of four that had been standing at the desk for 10 minutes cheated. you can't just stand there and chat with the agent for 10 minutes until the check in time comes.)

Anyway, the customer service person was fairly confident that it wouldn't be a problem getting on the flight, but of course there is always a chance. So of course, the three hours I had to wait felt longer than they had to. I even had a good book, but I was tired from not getting much sleep the night before (I was awake from about 2:30-4:30 and even got to hear our downstairs neighbour stumble in drunk and then was a nice treat) and thus had a hard time concentrating on the book.

Regardless, the 3 hours finally passed and I was given my seat assignment: 23B
Oh joy, the very back of the plane, middle seat. Love it.

As I like to wait until the line has thinned a little before I board the plane, I arrived at my seat and my row companions were already there. 23C got up, let me in and I took my place next to 23A. Unfortunately, 23A was spilling into my seat. Wide shoulders...and well...wide everything. I'm actually wondering how uncomfortable she must have been because it couldn't have felt great. 23C sat back down. Great, more wide shoulders (though not wide other parts)...and oh goodness gracious the smell. Oh the smell. It smelled like 23C hadn't showered in a week. I kept hoping that a flight attendant would notice the stench and the look on my face and see if there was another seat available. But, it didn't happen and I spent the entire time as the occupant of 23B and thus spent the 4 hour flight in relative discomfort (my back is still sore actually) trying my hardest not to let Stinky McSmellerson see the disgusted look on my face and trying to steal back at least a fraction of my armrest back (at least enough to change the channels).

When I got off the plane, I had to smell myself because I felt like the smell was crawling all over me.

So glad I did not pay full price for that seat.


Kirst said...

And after your experience in the middle seat we make you sit in between 2 kids. You should have told us. I would have sat back there, somehow. We had fun yesterday. Can't wait to see you again when you come back.

K said...

ahh but your kids didn't stink, nor are they fat. plus, i love them to bits. so it makes a difference.

i'm now busy helping out with wedding stuff tomorrow, so i won't be able to stop by but i'm looking forward to seeing you, S or A, Chris, silly girl, and the boy at thanksgiving.

and eww to lemon lime carbonated ice cream.

lu said...

give the city a hug for me, or a belly bump if you feel that is more appropriate. and enjoy your time there. i will keep my fingers crossed that you get on a flight back to ottawa without the smelliness or the squishiness.

stand-by, although less expensive, is a bitch.

thephoenixnyc said...

Ugh. Te worst case scenario. I just finished my two 14 hour CHina flights. Four hours is just a warmup.

Lulu said...

Yikes !! Not fun at all....I've been there, but with a rather large russian lady who doesn't speak anything I do and who is actually in my seat then after a lot of arm waving and gesturing moved to the seat right beside me, all the way home from Frankfurt - yeah!

Devo said...

At least you had a t.v. to watch. The 4 hour flight is no fun without televisions. I've had a t.v. on almost every single Vancouver or Victoria to/from Calgary flight, but only one Toronto Calgary flight, and it's almost 4 times as long.