Saturday, July 24, 2010

Part Seven ~ I STILL Hate Flying

At around 3, the plane was coming to the gate. I sat in an unoccupied section of the gate area. I wonder why people sit so far apart in airport terminals. In bus terminals, people sit right next to each other. In airport terminals, they seem to sit with two seats between people. I don't know why.

Anyway, there were two facing rows of about eight seats each. I sat near the window, because I like to sit near the window. I brought today's newspaper with me, and I proceeded to read. Over the next 15 minutes, three men joined me in that section. Each was occupied in his own world ~ one had a laptop, one was reading a paperback, and the other is on the phone. I look up often (I said I like to people watch). None of them seem to notice me. I wonder if they sat in that section because they saw a nicely-dressed woman there.

I did notice that there were more skirts than on my last flight. I also saw some casual dresses, and even a few women in heels. Tennies, shorts, jeans, capris and casual tops were the rule. In my skirt, I was in a clear minority. OK, if you make my group "men in skirts" I was in a minority of one.

If I saw a man dressed like me in the airport, I wonder if I would say something. I saw a sister in the mall once, and after she had passed me, I decided I should say something ~ introduce myself, say how brave she is (I hadn't gone solo at the time) and point out that she was quite passable, except for her walk. That's what drew my attention. I backtracked, but couldn't find her again. I think she ducked into the movie theatre.

But I wonder if a sister-in-drab had spotted me if he would have said something. He'd have to out himself. I know there were dozens of other t-gurls in the airport, just by the number of travellers. Maybe they didn't know what to say. Maybe they want to stay secret. Maybe I passed. I really wish I could read the minds of people, just when they see me for the first time.

I noticed that there were a lot of people in the terminal for a plane that only held about 70 people. I wondered if people were going flying standby and if they were going to overflow into "my" premium cabin. I wondered who my seatmate would be and saw some women who I wished would be my seatmate but I didn't know what I would do or say. I found out while boarding that two planes were using the same gate.

I think the passengers are off the plane. I keep hearing announcements that the "ramp is open" or the "ramp is closed". I get the feeling that "ramp is closed" means that people cannot leave or board. I found out when we boarded what it meant: there was no tunnel for this plane. You went outside and had to walk up a metal ramp to the plane's hatch, like in a small airport or like 30 years ago. I'm guessing when there was lightning the metal "ramp is closed". I don't think I'd want to be walking on that in an electrical storm anyway!

It's raining pretty heavily now.

I think Meg is having an easier time of flying than I usually do. I need to analyse this. Maybe I'm focussed on being Meg. I have to think about how I stand and sit and walk, how I talk, what I say, remember to take that purse!, how I hold my hands, to not touch my face, to not lick my lips (Meg seems to do that).... Meg is not a natural part of me. I need to work harder so she will be, but then I'd probably worry about flying instead of just calmly being Meg. I'm thinking of picking one mannerism (say, walking) and working on it until it's natural and then picking another and another. At first I was worried that I'd be acting more femininely and people might notice. Then I remembered that I don't really care.

I'm not worried about the flight, or the rental, or the hotel, or the rain, or my seatmate, or any of the other things that were keeping me awake for weeks. It's almost 3:30 and raining heavily but the "ramp is open" and they're announcing the oxymoronic "pre-board". I generally ignore the announcements and get on late, and I did that on this flight. The line is shorter, and I never need the overhead bin anyway. I do lose a people-watch opportunity, but that's OK. Maybe next time I'll bring something that has to go in the overhead, just to see if some gentleman tries to help me if I'm struggling with it. :)

I'm in seat 6C, the aisle in a 4-across plane. There is someone sitting in 6A and 6B. Seat 6D is also occupied.


  1. Sounds like an interesting story, hopefully next time you fly it gets better.

  2. Is that you, Pat? You're gonna make me break my budget! I really like that Lanai linen dress, and those kimono dresses near the bottom are really pretty too!


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