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Uncle Markie out and about.

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Jan '11

Riding Side Saddle For Five Hours.

6:15am – text to Jill “ETA”

6:35am – phone call to Jill –voicemail

6:50am – phone call to Jill answered, “Overslept” – me, “I meet you at the airport.” Hello MasterPark.

Great way to start the day those of you who know my obsessiveness to getting to the airport early. Hey, at least I got the Wall Street Journal read (today’s and the remains from yesterday) and the dishwasher unloaded.

At the airport, not much better. TSA understaffed and so the “Gold/1st Class” lane they are randomly sending people down, clogging it up – and there was only one lane out of the three open.

Not much time at the Board Room –enough for one cocktail and two bagels with cream cheese. Met up with Jill on the way out of the club, she had stopped by to pick up her water bottles she’d left on the trip to Tucson, and off to the gate we were, and right onto the plane… to find a POS (Person Of Size in airline terms) wedged into the middle seat between us. Clearly uncomfortable with the slab sides of the buckhead row seats, and certainly not able to use the tray table during the flight. Having friends who are POS who fly regularly, it was also obvious that he didn’t know of Alaska’s excellent policy for our larger brethren. The full rules are here: http://www.alaskaair.com/as/www2/help/faqs/second-seat.asp.

So, for five hours Jill and I (neither of us petite) sat side saddle in the 75% of our seat that was leftover. Jill facing the window, me getting knocked around by the flight attendaents and carts. Yes, I could have complained and made him miss the only flight to Boston that day (the plane was booked full), but, truly, he was as uncomfortable as us. During the flight I went back to the galley and asked if they had any of the POS brochures onboard that I’ve seen on the Alaska ticket counter – no such luck. I would have been happy to gently given the guy some handy material for future trips.

Let us all pray I get upgraded to 1st on the way back as the universes way of making it up to me.

With that in mind, the universe did seem to kick into high gear on landing. Kerstin’s finance was sitting in 6C (right in front of me) and so a ride awaited us at the airport – with a stop in the North End (old Italian district) for dinner on the way to Jill’s mother’s condo. Soon we were drinking wine (and a martini in honor of Pucci) and eating food, laughing, chatting, memories of the plane long gone. My new year’s resolution, of sorts, to cut back on the carbs shot to hell with the Carbonara — not much other than pasta or other things with cooked tomatoes on the menu, but I was happy for a hot meal.

Odd thing number one about the restaurant: that martini of which I spoke… Beefeater Martini, two olives up…. “Oh, we don’t have a full bar, we don’t stock gin…. I can make you a martini with vodka.” OK, I didn’t even bother asking what kind of Vodka… and when it did show up sans olives (they came later and were the small little stuffed ones… three to a frilly toothpick), what it lost in using a fresh shaker was more than made up in quantity… there had to be 5 ounces of vodka in the damn thing. Just what the doctor ordered after the plane flight.

Odd thing number two… after dinner she brought a complimentary shot of Lemoncello. Nice… but something odd about it. Like no other Lemoncello I’d ever had. Turns out if was Lemoncello Creame –tasted like 50% O’Douls and 50% Lemoncello, or as Kerstin said, “It’s like the filling of an éclair that I never wanted to eat.”

With a ride home (another nice treat) Jill and I settled into her mother’s Cambridge condo on the Charles before heading to the Star Market for an “essentials” run… eggs, sausage, coffee for the morning, and Diet Coke and Scotch (not in the same glass) for tonight.

Rest of the evening spent in techo hell… trying to get the wireless router working (failed)… so Jill is jacked in, and I’m tethered to my phone. Life could be much worse.



2 Responses to “Riding Side Saddle For Five Hours.”

  1. Swanda Says:

    As a POS I was soooooooooooooooooooo feeling for you and Jill when I was reading! How could they let him have a bulkhead seat or exit row? That is STRICKLY against their policy.

  2. markso Says:

    He got place there because he asked for a “handicapped” seat — walks with a cane. I sooooo wish I’d gotten a cell phone shot of the three of us sardines — as you can tell, the post was from humor and compassion rather than anger. Air travel is what it is, you either roll with the punchs or take blood pressure medicine.