Sunday, December 20, 2009
Worst Trip Part I: Queue wait Airlines
or just drop the K and make it UWAIT as someone wisecracked. Either way...
Not that it was entirely their fault. I can understand bad weather delays in winter. But I have to say this trip made a turn for the worse and then flew unwaveringly in that direction. Funny that the post on the return flight after my Eurotrip should come before my adventures there but guess I was having too much fun to blog while in Europe.
On arriving at the airport we were greeted with the fact that my 11.30 flight was already 3 hours behind schedule. I somehow found an isolated corner to nod off in the labyrinthine maze called Fraport (which sounds like a warm coffee trading cove in Jamaica and which it most decidedly was not) but the noble Denial spirit can take adversity with the best of them so I gallantly maintained a brave face even while snoozing.
The security check was a breeze. A very chilly one that makes you shiver once you've stripped off all but the last layer of clothing. Somehow the guy with the metal detector took a fancy to my shoes and decided that something smelt fishy about them. I was inclined to agree with him and didn't offer any resistance even when he made off with them. I believe he was searching for the perfect pair for himself and wanted to try mine on for size. The fact that I had to go through the whole process twice endeared these efficient individuals to me all the more. I promised to praise them in public whenever I could.
Misery loves company and I was glad to have two guys I knew along with me for the flight....sorry, the wait. One of them, the owner of the joke mentioned above had decided to lug along some beverages of the non non alcoholic variety which turned out to be a pain in the as(s) we shall later see.
I ascertained from sources that the incoming flight from Geneva had only started at 2pm and so I had a reasonable estimate of a 4pm takeoff time from Frankfurt. Since I didn't share this knowledge with the general public it was funny to see them jump at every announcement with hope and fall back with despair. But conservative estimates are made to be broken. After having waited 4 hours at the airport we then waited half an hour in the bus staring at our plane for god knows what.
Repeated announcements thanking us for our patience only served to test it further. The icing on the cake was of course the hour long delay after getting on the plane. The pilot thanked us for choosing Kuwait Airlines, a ghastly ironic joke at which I would have laughed had I not been drained of energy and emotion already.When the plane finally started moving the passengers actually applauded, no doubt thinking that positive affirmation was the way to improve the situation.
But alas, my nightmares were only beginning. To my left a largish individual had comfortably engulfed the window seat and the fight for the armrest was over before it started. I gave up hope of pushing the Golem aside after two tries that left me panting. I decided that if the mountain won't move away from Mohammad then Mohammad must go away from the mountain. To top it all off he was already sawing wood. He looked like he did it for a living. Why did he have to do it in his sleep too?!
To my horror the family to my right seemed to have not one, not two but five babies! Now don't get me wrong I love babies just as much as the other guy does...if the other guy was Jonathan Swift. And yeah I am kidding. But I prefer to enjoy other people's babies, just like other people's dogs. That way you can admire the little cutie pies without having to go through all the messy parts of their upbringing. IMO parents who successfully bring up their children to be a useful part of society deserve a medal.
But nothing could have prepared me for the unholy racket made by these little buggers. I couldn't decide whether to curse or to find some choice biblical passage for exorcising the banshees that appeared to have possessed this lot. To say that they were screaming would be like saying that Saddam Hussein was a naughty boy. Together with the deep basso lumberjack on my left they pretty much covered both extremes of the the audible spectrum. Perfect quadrophonic sound with distortion levels so low as to make a brave man weep and believe me,I did. I just had to play rhythm and we could start a death metal band. We could call it Insomaniacs.
If the dad had started a conversation with me at that point somehow I am sure it would have turned towards eugenics and birth control. He and I were having a cold war. It started with him glaring at me, when I was on the phone while the plane was still on the ground waiting, as if to say "How dare you use your phone in the plane? What a jerk! Don't you know it interferes with the communication blah blah blah". To which I gave him a look that said " Man, We're still on the ground and we're not even moving! Besides right now, my phone just uses one band. Your daughter there is broadcasting an infinite bandwidth white noise signal.". I don't think he got it :(
Here is where I noticed a distinct advantage of having a blog. Usually I'd be so mad by now that I'd be steaming at my ears. Now I was thinking "This is so bad I can actually rant about it! Just wait, you losers. I will have my revenge mwahahahahah!". So I did something absolutely positively evil. I woke up the man mountain next to me and asked HIM for a pen so I could write down all that I hated about this trip. Mwahahahahaah. I'd recommend a blog as an effective anger management solution any day.
Finally we landed at our stopover in Kuwait. We were only 7.5 hours delayed. With the connecting flight long gone we waited to see what would happen. More of this sad tale in part II.