Next stop, Madrid!
My mom and I arrived at the airport, checked my bag (22kg!), she took a blurry picture of me and then we said our good-byes. I then went through security with my personal item and carry-on that did not meet Iberia weight limit standards. From the ticket counter, through security and on to the plane, they never once checked the weight of my carry-on, even though supposedly there is a weight restriction. That was a weight lifted off of my shoulders! I got to my gate, charged up my cell a bit and me up with another member of my program named Joe, before I knew it, we were boarding! The flight was packed and all I was thinking about was that I sure wouldn’t be able to find a spot in an overhead bin for my carry-on. Not to mention, it exceeds the weight limit so it is really heavy. I definitely understand the weight limit rule for carry-ons but I was too busy abiding by the checked bag weight limit rule and it’s impossible to follow every rule all at once!
So, the first thing that you do when you get onto an airplane is scope out the overhead bins so that you can store your carry-on and get into your own seat and out of the way. I looked up at the overhead bins and said something to the effect of, “How the fuck is my carry-on going to fit up there?” I am not sure exactly what I said but I know I said “fuck” because a second later I looked down and saw a nun smiling up at me and thought to myself “Fuck, I just said fuck in front of a nun”, then I thought “Oh fuck, she probably just heard me think the word fuck because she’s a nun and nun’s do weird scary voo doo shit like that” Then I thought, “Oh no, I am going to hell and there is no way in hell I can sit by a nun for eight hours.”
Either way, Joe put my overweight carry-on into the open bin across from my seat and I went to sit down and the nun asked me to switch seats with her “sister”, who isn’t really her sister but is her nun sister (Not to be confused with the way my friend Olaide uses the word sister). Really, I think people just throw around the word sister and at this point who knows what the word sister really means. Anyways, now my nun is smiling and nodding and pointing to her sister who is eight rows back (and my luggage is already in the overhead bin right by my seat). I am debating giving my seat to the nun’s sister and also debating how I am going to get my carry-on down and doubting that there will be any room for it in an overhead bin down by the nun’s sister’s seat. Why me?! As I am thinking all of this, a man asks me to switch with him because his young children just so happen to be in the seat across the aisle from my nun and myself. Seriously? A man to be with his children or a nun? Cute smiling children or a cute smiling nun? Seriously, so serious. Not to mention, I don’t want to sit by a nun nor did I want to be responsible for these kids (what if they were crazy psycho kids who screamed and cried and did whatever crazy psycho kids do?)
Why is so much happening at once? I just want to move to Europe in peace, why, world? Why?
Then, a woman chimes in and says, “The man should be by his kids.” THANK-YOU! My thoughts exactly, but are you legally allowed to say no to a nun? No idea. Either way, I did not want to sit by her. She could probably see my sins just by looking at me (glad I followed my own advice and didn’t wear a boobie shirt in the airplane because I definitely don’t think the nun wanted any cleavage to go with my expletive). Either way, kids definitely should sit by their parents on airplanes, not to mention, I wasn’t about to comfort them in a time of need. So, I switched with the man and he got to be closer to his kids (who turned out to be very cute and well-mannered and I got to watch the man lovingly reach across the aisle and put blankies back over them when they fell off and help them to open their snacks, adorable). Then, I got a bonus! To sit by the woman who swayed my decision! She was heading back to her home in Israel after being in the states to go to Burning Man. I also got to sit by a guy who is about to begin a 6-week back packing trip through Europe. They are way cooler than I am. Jealousy. Needless to say, I don’t think I would have had the same conversations with the nun or the children, if any at all.
Some would say that people who MUST sit by the people they are travelling with should talk to the travel company rather than imposing and forcing others out of their seats. Personally, I don’t care, as long as I don’t have to sit next to someone who smells, it doesn’t really matter. Anyone who is willing to listen to me talk would be my ideal flight-mate. A nun or kids probably wouldn’t have been great flight mates, so I am happy that I switched seats. A big thanks to Tyler and Anat for keeping me entertained on our flight!
What would you have done in my situation? Who would you have chosen and why? Maybe you could be grateful for the people you weren’t originally going to sit next to!