I fly internationally a lot, so I’ve sat next to some interesting people. In most cases, that’s pretty cool. In the case of the Bangladeshi guy who had yet to discover the wonders of Western hygiene and deodorant or the Italian three-year old with a non-stop, high-pitched, full volume screaming fit for four hours, it wasn’t so cool. My last flight to London, though, I sat next to an archeology professor from Cambridge University.
I know you’re thinking, “Wow! Indiana Jones!” Okay, you can think that. But unless they cast the older, heftier uncle of Harry Potter’s best buddy Ron Weasley as Indiana Jones, then it wasn’t him. I’m not saying that it wasn’t still cool to sit next to Uncle Weasley, the Cambridge archeologist, it just wasn’t a young Harrison Ford. And because of that, after a nice chat during take-off, I was ready to put on my airline-issued headphones and watch a movie.
Let’s stop right there. You have to remember, when this man is not crawling around ancient digs in obscure parts of Africa, he’s standing in front of some of the brightest young minds in the world and lecturing. Lecturing = talking for extended periods without interruption from the audience. Since we were short a few bright young minds on this particular flight, he had me. And I was trapped. The flight attendant pointed out that it was not a full flight if we wanted to spread out a bit in our section, which I would have quickly done, except I was pinned against the window. Curse the window seat!
For nearly nine hours from Houston into London’s Heathrow Airport, I was lectured on the importance of African archeology, the impact of past cultures on today’s political environment and an incredible amount of other obscure knowledge that way over-pressurized my brain. Face it, I’m blonde; I’d just spent two weeks living with my sick parents in a retirement community and; quite frankly, there just wasn’t enough alcohol on that flight to make it okay for me.
By the time we touched down in London, I’d developed a twitch in my left eye and a strong aversion to men in sweater vests. I’ve decided I’m too old to be that polite. And from here on out, I’ll never say another bad thing about the Bangladeshi guy, because, suddenly, he doesn’t seem quite so bad.
I’m hopping that same flight later this week. Did you get that, Harrison Ford? Here’s to hoping for a smooth flight, happy landings and a seatmate who wont blow up my brain!