Blogs by Jerome Parisse
The Art of Flying
7/15/2010 5:14:53 PM
I flew from Sydney to Perth and back in the last two days, which meant around ten hours of flying in twenty-four hours, just for a three-hour meeting. Perth is a wonderful city and it's always a pleasure to go there, weren't it for the long flight. On my flight back last night I was sitting next to a giant. So tall that I thought his head was going to go through the ceiling. I watched him sit next to me in his economy seat and try to fold his legs to make them fit between his seat and the one in front. Alas, this didn't work and he had to encroach on my space with half of one of his leg. I wasn't going to say anything, I felt bad enough for the guy. And then he started working on a big file, underlining words in yellow stabylo boss and constantly turning pages, which meant that I was getting his right elbow into my ribs every time he made a move. He tried to change position, I tried to change position, to no avail. I ended up having to move forward and to the right ,to avoid being hit. The flight felt very, very long. Other than that, generally speaking, people were well behaved. A woman complained that there was no more space in the overhead compartment... Where was she supposed to put her TWO large bags? She pushed everything around and forced her way through, ending up nowhere apart from starting a fight with another woman whose bags were being squeezed into oblivion. A flight attendant had to come to the rescue. There was also the conversation between the man and the woman behind me about the birthday party for a three year old they had just attended. I had to listen to all the details about the cakes, the children, Stephanie's tantrum and Josh's urgent big poo. Then there was this boy a few rows in front who forgot that he had his headphones on and insisted on telling (screaming) someone about the dum movie he was watching. The person he was talking to must have had her/his headphones on (or earplugs), since they made no attempt to stop the yelling. Painful.
Flying for me always feels surreal. Pick 300 or 400 people who have nothing to do with each other, who have never met and will probably never meet again, and make them sit them next to each other in a metal box with absolutely no room, then send the box into space for at least twelve hours and watch the result. Flying boxes full of rows and rows of strangers filling the sky. It's a miracle there aren't more murders in planes! It beats the office and work colleagues big time. Here are a few of the stereotypes whom I have met and can make travelling by plane hell. See if you can find others. Please let me know...
The small bladder person who goes to the toilet every half hour and is sitting in a middle seat, forcing you to stand up every time they have to go to the loo.
The kid sitting next to you who keeps moving, hitting, screaming and who splashes you with his food when he/she eats.
The kid's mother.
The baby who keeps crying (You can't really blame her!). Of course her cot is right under your nose (You thought you were going to have more leg room, and you end up with a baby cot and the crying monster instead).
The baby's mother.
Large people who sit next to you and generously overflow onto your seat.
The giant I was talking about before.
The sniffler who's never seen a tissue in his life.
The passenger behind you who keeps hitting your back with his knees.
The entire row of passengers behind who grab your headrest when they want to get up and wake you up every time.
The passenger who's sick with gastro and used the toilet just before you.
The flight attendant who pretends to forget your request every time.
The passenger in front who decides to lie down and recline his seat when you're having dinner or watching that can't-be-missed action movie.
The football team who've just won the match of their lives.
The gaggle of teenage girls who're going on a three-day, girls only, weekend (And of course you have somehow ended up sitting in the middle of the group).
The "talkative" who insists on telling you her life story.
The stinker who's never seen a stick of deodorant in his whole life.
The honeymooners who keep pashing next to you during the entire flight.
The passenger who doesn't turn up on time and whose luggage needs to be identified and taken out of the plane, delaying the flight by one hour at least.
The sick passenger sitting to your left and who makes ample use of the air sick bag.
The passenger sitting next to you, falling asleep on your shoulder (and most of the time dribbling, too).
The loud snorer (They're everywhere!).
I'm facing fourty-eight hours of flying in the next month or so. Wish me luck!
Post a Comment new!
More Blogs by Jerome Parisse
Body Swap Interview and Yunnan Trip... - Thursday, March 10, 2011
The Corrections - Wednesday, March 09, 2011
Buried - Wednesday, March 09, 2011
Black Swan - Monday, March 07, 2011
Educating Rita - Sunday, February 27, 2011
Bidrman, by Mo hayder - Sunday, February 27, 2011
The Insomnia of Stars - Wednesday, February 23, 2011
If I Stay, by Gayle Forman - Wednesday, February 23, 2011
Blacklands by Belinda bauer - Wednesday, February 16, 2011
Where is Marc Levy's respect for his readers? - Saturday, February 12, 2011
The Wings of Leo Spencer at $10 only! - Wednesday, February 09, 2011
Boracay, twenty years later - Tuesday, February 08, 2011
Hereafter - Tuesday, February 08, 2011
Gone (Mo Hayder) - Tuesday, February 08, 2011
Free e-books until 6 February! - Monday, January 31, 2011
Two Brothers - Sunday, January 30, 2011
Miserere - Saturday, January 29, 2011
Shanghai - Saturday, January 22, 2011
3 e-books for free until 6 January! - Thursday, January 20, 2011
A Spot of Bother - Thursday, January 20, 2011
Sarah's Key - Wednesday, January 19, 2011
The Tree - Tuesday, January 18, 2011
Norwegian Wood - Tuesday, January 18, 2011
The American - Tuesday, January 18, 2011
Eat Pray Love - Saturday, January 08, 2011
50 literature ideas you really need to know, by John Sutherland - Saturday, January 08, 2011
Aftershock - Thursday, January 06, 2011
Room by Emma Donoghue - Tuesday, January 04, 2011
Harry Potter and the Deahtly Hallows - Friday, December 17, 2010
The art of happiness - Thursday, December 16, 2010
The Scold's Bridle by Minette Walters - Wednesday, December 15, 2010
Worst film ever? - Sunday, December 12, 2010
Trailer for BODY SWAP - Friday, December 10, 2010
Hong Kong Murders - Monday, December 06, 2010
The kids are all right - Monday, December 06, 2010
The Killing Fields - My Father's Guests - Tuesday, November 30, 2010
Interview on Body Swap and publishing on Kindle by David Wisehart - Friday, November 26, 2010
The Animated Version of the Riverside Scene at Qingming Festival - Monday, November 22, 2010
What is it about Japan? - Saturday, November 13, 2010
The Ice House - Sunday, November 07, 2010
Body Swap - Wednesday, November 03, 2010
Taipei: the city that reads... - Tuesday, November 02, 2010
Free royalty-free music - Monday, October 25, 2010
Trailer for THE WINGS OF LEO SPENCER - Saturday, October 23, 2010
Reference Material for Learning Chinese - Saturday, October 23, 2010
The world’s first text message adventure romance with the other side! - Wednesday, October 20, 2010
Grease.... or a failed English test - Monday, October 18, 2010
The jungle temples of Angkor, Cambodia - Wednesday, October 13, 2010
A little lower than the angels - Wednesday, October 13, 2010
61 Hours by Lee Child - Friday, October 01, 2010
The obsessions of Amelie Nothomb - Monday, September 27, 2010
Kaohsiung, the friendly city - Sunday, September 26, 2010
A concise history of Hong Kong - Tuesday, September 21, 2010
Nicaragua, twenty years on... - Monday, September 20, 2010
We all make mistakes, don't we? - Saturday, September 18, 2010
Serena - Thursday, September 16, 2010
Early works: Coben takes us for a ride - Tuesday, September 14, 2010
Tokyo / The Devil of Nanking - Sunday, September 12, 2010
Young and bold - Saturday, September 11, 2010
Gay marriage anyone? - Thursday, September 09, 2010
iPad anyone? - Wednesday, September 08, 2010
Online book promotion: The French strike again! - Tuesday, September 07, 2010
Blood Canticle - Monday, September 06, 2010
More Vampires! Breaking Dawn and The Passage - Sunday, September 05, 2010
Blackwood Farm - Wednesday, August 04, 2010
Animal Kingdom - Wednesday, August 04, 2010
Breath - Sunday, August 01, 2010
The Ghost Writer - Date Night - Dragons et al - Thursday, July 29, 2010
According to Kit - Friday, July 23, 2010
Playtime - Wednesday, July 21, 2010
It's all about words... - Monday, July 19, 2010
Deed to Death - Friday, July 16, 2010
The Art of Flying - Thursday, July 15, 2010
A Gate a the Stairs - Wednesday, July 14, 2010
Twitter: the art of (non) conversation? - Sunday, July 11, 2010
City of Thieves - Saturday, July 10, 2010
Gravity and Drift - Thursday, July 08, 2010
Who says nobody is reading any more? - Wednesday, July 07, 2010
Watercolours: the travelling artist - Wednesday, July 07, 2010
Release of "My Sister's Choice" - Monday, July 05, 2010
Eclipse: the movie vs the book - Saturday, July 03, 2010
Three chocolate croissants, please! - Wednesday, June 30, 2010
Paranormal romance: The list goes on - Sunday, June 27, 2010
Sex and the City - Friday, June 25, 2010
A great launch - Thursday, June 24, 2010
Jackhammering, sniffles and gum chewing - Tuesday, June 22, 2010
New Moon, Stephenie Meyer again - Monday, June 21, 2010
Reilly: The case for literary fiction - Wednesday, June 16, 2010
TWILIGHT - Tuesday, June 15, 2010
Bedroom Farce - Wednesday, June 09, 2010
Writing for the deaf and the hearing - Monday, June 07, 2010
A kiss or three - Sunday, June 06, 2010
Is - Wednesday, June 02, 2010
A prolific writer - Tuesday, June 01, 2010
Angels are the new vampires! - Tuesday, June 01, 2010
The ebook epiphany! - Sunday, May 30, 2010
Theatre Value Meal: Small, Medium, or Large? - Saturday, May 29, 2010
Of the importance of detail - Friday, May 28, 2010
Literary fiction or gothic horror? - Friday, May 28, 2010