Saturday, 12 December 2015

Airport amusement

There is no doubt that airports can be quite amusing places. That is apart from being told by a burly security supervisor at the x-ray gate that thanks to the only contribution Yasser Arafat ever made to society, I had to remove my belt, shoes, watch and place my AK-47 in the tray provided.
Watching people going around their travel ‘business’ in airports and on board the aircraft is hilarious.

There are those who are plainly not very good at it, continually checking all manner of minutiae with the other members of the party. “Do we go to the gate?”, “Have we time for a beer?”, “I MUST get a pizza”.

There are those who have plainly not done it much before and like their fellow travellers to be made fully aware of the exact opposite, as they point and gesture to the monitor shouting out their destination and boarding gate at every passing opportunity to one and all around them.

There are those who think they are something special – despite the fact they are travelling via budget carrier – all shouty, pointy and with ‘the stance’. Yes, they have that certain stance, that certain air about them. They deport themselves in a totally different and needing-a-firm-smack-in-the-mouth sort of manner to anyone else. In short, total pains in the butt.

Nice seat anyone?
Nah! Let's stand up and queue for 40 minutes instead

Then it comes to boarding the plane. The gate is announced and immediately there is a huge bleat as people rush to queue . . . . . and stand in line or be first on the aircraft and then sit in a cramped seat for 40 minutes rather than remain seated in the comparative comfort of the departure area until it’s a case of sail through on to the aircraft for a mere 10-minute wait to departure.

Then on the aircraft itself, you have the ones who, the moment the seatbelt light is turned off, immediately stand up to go and chat with their friends. You know, the self-same ones who are always seen standing in the coach when it passes you on the motorway.

They stand in the aisles, blocking the way for the air hostesses (or salespeople if it’s a RyanAir flight), with their silly smiles on their faces, pretending to be listening to every syllable being spoken, while in fact they’re just eyeing up the scantily-clad teenager five rows behind. They gesticulate emphatically to their other friends further down the plane, mouthing every word with added exaggeration and adding a silent guffaw at the end of every statement and gesture.And despite it being a three-minute flight, they have their shoes off.

The things these aisle-blockers have in common, aside from the stupid smiles on their faces, are arm-filled tattoos, rather stupid haircuts and the inevitable charity wrist band from the most recently-aired TV charity event.

And if it is a budget flight, when the Trolley-Dolly or Trolley-Desmond comes along touting the airline’s completely over-priced and totally-unhealthy fast-food, they will stock up like there is no tomorrow. Sandwiches, crisps, muffins, beer, G&T etc. Helping to transform the originally-advertised £9.99 flight that they have actually paid £89 for to way over the £110 mark. Meaning they could have travelled by the country’s national carrier with baggage and refreshments included in the price.

Yes. Air travel. Great fun.

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