Half-Way Point

It’s not really the half-way point. But it’s about half-way through my travel-to-London day.

Had a couple of weird moments on the flight here. The guy I sat beside looked like he resented the fact that I was taking the empty seat beside him. Now, I get that – you can get your hopes up about having an empty seat beside you. But the scowl he gave me was… unwelcoming. Then, half-way through the flight, I started coughing. Part of it was the nuts I was eating1,  part of it was the fact I’m just over a cold, and part of it was my allergies acting up in the dry airplane air. Anyway, the guy kept frowning over at me, as I struggled to drink some water and get it under control.

And then, about fifteen minutes later, he turns around in his seat and says to the guy behind him, “Stop hitting it! Just stop hitting it! It’s very distracting!” I thought the guy might have been kicking my buddy’s seat, and so I started cutting him some slack – that would be really irritating, and would make me grumpy, too.

Things calmed down then but, as we were standing up getting ready to exit the plane, my buddy pushed in front of me ((I was waiting for the aisle behind me to clear enough that I could go get my bags out of the overhead storage a couple of rows back.)) and started berating the guy seated behind him. There followed a typical angry Canadian confrontation, where both people were trying to be the most reasonable while still being angry.

Turns out that the guy beside me was complaining that the guy behind him had been tapping the touch screen on the entertainment screen too hard.

But the guys started trying to out-rank each other based on how far and how often they traveled, but escalated when the guy behind us said, “You’re from Toronto? Well, that explains everything.”2

Now, I’m sort of the third point in the triangle these two goofs are making, and I see all the other folks standing nearby watching avidly. Fortunately, it didn’t escalate any further, but one of the spectators caught up with me on the jetway and said that his money was on the first punch thrown taking me out by accident. I laughed and told him I had an escape route planned, through the galley and into the bathroom.

Then, because I wasn’t getting enough stress, I came through security here at Toronto to find that the cap of my nice pen and the small notebook it was attached to were no longer in my breast pocket after I had reloaded everything from the security routine. The pen itself was there, but the main thing I was concerned about was the notebook – it contained all the addresses, e-mail addresses, phone numbers, bus numbers, tube routes, and train information for my trip. Most of it is up on the itinerary, but I always carry a pocket-sized hard copy on trips because you can’t always guarantee connectivity.

So, after getting a security supervisor to go back through the security line to help me look I, genius that I am, stuck my hand in my pants pocket and found both the pen cap and the notebook.

That story is for all my friends who like to hear stories about how I make an ass of myself. Enjoy.

After security, I made my way up to the British Airways business class lounge. And then left it about ten minutes later, because Elliot got in touch with me via Facebook to say he was not too far away from me, so I went to spend a half-hour or so with him.

That was nice, because I’m missing his homecoming to Winnipeg.

And then it was back to the lounge to read and have a nice dinner. Now, my plane should start boarding right away, so I’m signing off.

  1. Salty bits of nut stuck in the back of my throat. Are you reading this, Chris? []
  2. For non-Canadians – and for some Torontonians – much of the rest of Canada view Torontonians as self-centred and arrogant. Me, I know self-centred and arrogant people from all over, so I don’t judge. But this might help explain things. []

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