The trip became memorable even before we took to the skies. My brother, mother, and I made it through security and to our gate with a couple hours to spare. (My philosophy is simple: if you’re not early, you’re late.) Mom decided to go on a walk through the airport and ended up gaining a reputation with the security folks. She absentmindedly passed back through the security checkpoint and realized her mistake a few seconds too late. Having crossed the checkpoint by only a few feet, she asked the nearest guard if it was necessary for her to go through the entire security procedure again. Well, it was. As she went through the process a second time, one of the guards said, “Ah, Mrs. Stewart, coming through again I see.” Thankfully, she got back to our gate before the plane left.
It surprised us to find that our plane from Nashville to Denver wasn’t very large—somewhere around thirty seats. Small planes aren’t as comfortable as large ones: the ride is typically bumpier, the seats are smaller, the noise is noisier, and there are no in-flight meals or movies. However, there were two consolations. One, terrorists probably weren’t going to bother with a dinky plane like ours. And two, we had the most entertaining flight attendant in the entire world. He was basically a stand-up comedian masquerading as an airline employee. Here are some of his comments during the flight (yes, I took notes the entire time, so some of what you read below is verbatim):
- The bathroom is in the back, although it’s broken so I hope you used the one in the airport.
- Today’s in-flight movie is The Invisible Man. I will also be serving a Peter Pan lunch. If you can imagine it, then imagine eating it.
- If you want more light, push the white button above your seat—not the orange one. That’s the ejector button.
- I’ll be coming through with the cart soon [to pass out snacks] and I have not received my cart license yet. So if you want to keep your extremities, please keep them out of the aisle. That is a disclaimer.
- If you need anything else, just let me know. I’ll be doing origami, but only by request. I’m serious.
- This is my first day.
- [After we landed] Be careful when opening the overhead compartments because shift happens.
Yes, we were off to a good start.