Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Flying With The Cool Kids

When I was a kid, I once flew by myself to Quebec to visit my grandma and all of my Canadian family. I'd probably only ridden a plane once before that, but it didn't matter. It didn't matter because from the moment my parents dropped me off at the gate to the time the plane landed, I seemed to be the center of attention of all the flight attendants. Combine this with the fact that I was wearing a stellar outfit (carefully selected specifically for the flight and consisting of a baggy, lime green t-shirt with matching, tight lime green biker shorts, fold-over socks, a scrunchy and my LA Gear sneakers) and I felt like the coolest kid that had ever flown the North American skies.

This afternoon, I was nervous about flying to Arizona. The anxiety came from the fact that my nose hadn't stopped running for the past 4 days and was accompanied by an annoyingly persistent cough. Now, let's face it, no one wants to sit next to someone with all the symptoms listed on the side of the Nyquil Extra Strength bottle. They think: That leper could be carrying the bubonic plague for all we know. I know that is what people are thinking because that is what I think anytime the person next to me on a plane so much as sneezes. When I sit next to someone who demonstrates any of the symptoms I was exhibiting, I turn my head away from the person as far as I can, breathing in only from the small pocket of air in the window, somehow believing this air is cleaner, less contaminated.

As I was stressing out about who I would sit next to and whether or not he would be a big germaphobe (just who do these people think they are?), I lucked out and found a seat near the front next to a kid no older than 10. My gosh, if I thought I was cool flying alone at 10, this kid would be frozen. He had remarkably cool hair, worn bleached with his roots showing, and a pierced ear (a small peace sign stud to be exact). He informed me that he was flying back home by himself to Arizona, which he considered to be much better than California because it's warmer. (I did not detect any signs of him joking so I assumed he must have been completely serious). Kids must be the least germaphobic people alive so I thanked my lucky stars the aisle seat next to the cool kid was open.

I slid into my seat and found myself, for the first time in a long time, actually paying attention to the flight attendant's presentation about what to do with our masks should the cabin suddenly lose pressure. Because what if we did crash? I would surely need to know about the masks. We might even crash on a remote tropical island with mystical, magical properties. They might start a show about it - all of us plane wreck survivors trying to live together, all the while trying to avoid conflict with the original island inhabitants. We could call them "Those" people. I would want to be on that show because who wouldn't. So I paid attention to the mask lesson.

If we did crash, I would need to make my alliances right away. Everyone knows that is how anyone survives after being plane wrecked on an island with strangers (at least that's what happens on TV). I would start by befriending the cool kid. On the first hour of the flight alone, he had proved useful. He had a large backpack which would come in handy for gathering mangoes and coconuts. I knew it was a big, roomy bag because he kept pulling all sorts of stuff out of it and piling it up on the seat in between us. A mini gaming system, a collection of CD's, a DVD player, a beach towel with a skull and bones print and a package wrapped in cardboard and sealed with massive amounts of duct tape.

Throughout the flight, the cool kid's magician's bag did not stop producing. He played a Madonna song on one of his many electronics and offered me one of a handful of Jolly Ranchers. After a few moments of sitting quietly, he reached into the bottom of his bag, pulled something out and then reclined back in his seat. I turned to see the latest trick he had performed and saw that he had put on a pair of over-sized 3D glasses. "For the movie," he said ominously. If you've ever flown Southwest, you would know there are no 3-D movies screened in flight, so I had to assume he knew something I didn't know...

...Maybe we really were going to crash...

I almost started saying a little prayer in preparation for the crash when the flight attendant came by to take our drink orders.

"Would you like anything to drink?" she asked me.
"Orange juice, please," I said.
"Sure thing," she smiled at me.
Turning to the cool kid, she asked, "And what would you like, sir?"
"Bloody Mary," he said. Just like that. Bloody. Mary.
The flight attendant, who was just a touch hard of hearing, put her fingers to her ears to indicate she couldn't hear him and then leaned across me, closer to him.
"What was that?" she asked.
"Bloody Mary juice," he responded.
"Oh! The spicy stuff!" she cackled and jotted it down on her notepad.

I looked at the cool kid and then at the flight attendant, as if to say, The cool kid with the 3D glasses on just ordered a Bloody Mary, but she must not have noticed since she gave me another smile before continuing on down the aisle.

I turned in my seat to see where the cameras might be; the island show must have started filming already.

61 comments:

Laiza said...

He's definitely cool! And he's just 10 y.o. traveling all by himself...I can just imagine that you had a great time together on the plane. Hope your colds are gone and finally that your feeling better.

Mara said...

Kid sounds like he was prepared! I wonder where I can find myself one of those magical bags...
I would love to see this show, by the way, but my television does not seem to have the channel it's one. I guess we'll have to rely on you to tell us how it ends.

isarelisfun said...

I think? that for his age he was pretty experinced! about flying by himself.lol

OoLahLa said...

His bag sounds like my purse. Purses are overrated and mines not big enough to live up to the standards of a 'bag'. I have never took a plane for transporatation. Long car rides were my thing until last month. Trains are pretty amazing. I wouldn't be caught dead on a plane by myself.

karen said...

Thats great hope you had a good experience...

___________________
Karen
The best prices for the best Entertainment

anilkumar said...

cool!!
Http//:indiansbest.com

Amy said...

Stumbled on your blog after it was blog of note... love this story!

Belle said...

Great post!
So glad i stumbled across your blog :)

Zee said...

So cute! Although...It's not to odd to find kids flying alone these days. My kid cousins reguarly fly themselves.

NYSILLY.COM said...

LOL Sobrina, I remember L.A. Gears every kid wanted to have those. Post-flight anxiety is common, I stay up the whole day before and by the time I sit down on the plane seat I fall asleep. Unfortunately, I sleep through all meals but an 8 hour flight feels like 5 minutes.

Post answers. Get paid. That simple

Georgina Marmoy said...

I like this post! :)

2busy said...

A very precocious child!

Michelle Johnson said...

What a delightful post Sobrina. That kid is a pip. He came prepared for everything.

Love the show LOST. Sad to see it go this season.

Lastly, I hope you get to feeling better soon. Colds can be so annoying. Have a great day.

Jessie said...

what a difference between his generation and ours. he orders a bloody mary and has all these cool electronics for the plane while when i traveled as a kid i'd have a packed juice book, coloring book and a pad for tic tac toe :)

have a good trip!

MKL said...

Bloody Mary? Is he allowed to drink that? I thought USA is very strict on kids when it comes to alcohol... Or was it a sort of non-alcoholic cocktail? I never flew in the USA, but I did fly intercontinental, 13h from Paris to Singapore... Man, I was really afraid who might be my seat neighbour, cuz 13h is a lot of time for someone to annoy you. Luckily it turned out fine. I can totally feel you on what you went thru, it's like on Lost. You wonder if anything happens, who are these people that you may depend on in case you get stranded.

alexeyfor said...

The kid appeared to be a brave one. Looks like he was prepared for that.

Jana said...

haha, a bloody mary that is too funny...geez reminds me of candid camera...those were the days...you crack me up.

missyellowjeans said...

I really liked this. It felt like I was reading the first chapter to a really good book.

ashleyregina said...

seems pretty brave and prepared...great story(:

The Karen Chronicles said...

Congrats on your blogs of note mention!

punkystarfish said...

Kids these days, my Mom STILL asks the flight crew to "look after her baby girl" on the flight... Sad thing is I'm 21....

J.Me. said...

Hahahahaha. I was so like that, too. Kids these days and all their electronics...

Hunter said...

Congratulations on the Blog of Note street cred. The accolades are well deserved!

I enjoyed the post and felt compelled to share…

When I fly Southwest, I actually feign the latest pandemic during boarding. There’s nothing like a bout of well-rehearsed coughing to clear out your aisle. Sure I’m risking a karmic backlash, but I get to stretch out and avoid having a stranger recount the plot from last week’s “Two and Half Men.”

It’s a strategy worth considering.

Mary said...

Loved the travelling story. Came across your blog via Blog of Note.
Well done. Wishing you much blogging fun and success.

Mary

saphou said...

Love your post. Do you understand anything of portuguese? I'd like to see you in my blog, that I now share with some virtual friends.
Saphou

MKL said...

Saphou, don't pretend you read her post. You're just promoting your pathetic blog. Yeah, right. It's as likely that she speaks Portuguese as the fact that you have actually read her post.

EchoStatik said...

Awesome story. I had LA Gears when i was a kid, mine were the ones that lit up when you walked. Great times...

This was a blog of note, but I think i'll keep up with this one.

Guitara said...

Hey, just stumbled across your blog and read this post. Really good post!

Kimberlee said...

Definitly interesting! I love your blog!

http://kimberlee-myonlinemoleskine.blogspot.com/

Emmy said...

What a great post! I love the outfit you wore, sounds like you were definitely a cool kid to! Great blog

Mikaela said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mikaela said...

I loved your random, humorous, and conversant writing style. Made me giggle. ;-)

mathlabour said...

Great job
I knew that you'are studying at UCLA , so I wanna to know more: Do you know Dr. Terence Tao

Holly said...

your blogs are so wonderful!!! this one made me laugh out loud

Laila Of Course! said...

Woaaah, I was most definitely not that cool at ten years old. Loved the story! :) (A Bloody Mary... aahhaha)

-Laila
www.randomweavings.blogspot.com

My Name is Grace said...

Haha this made me laugh :)

Ko said...

I like how being a Blog of Note has buoyed your spirit and your posts :) Congratulations and keep it rolling!

Tender Branson said...

What would happen if younger, cool kid you, ran into this cool kid? Think he would've laughed at your outfit? Loved the story...

Ég elska þig said...

I liked this post =)

I don't know how to use this thing yet but just wanted to let you know!

goldoun said...

Anytime you accomplished bloggers blog, makes one feel less and less like the ten year old.
great story.

saphou said...

MKL, you have a great anger in you. Get rid of your pain body. És uma parvalhona da treta. Trata-te.Küsschen. Saphou

MKL said...

Saphou, I only share my opinion and I stay by it. You're a spammer and
Você está louco e mudos. Küsschen, MKL

saphou said...

You are so dear. I'm sorry you don't have a blog and your identity is so hidden. Spam, pam,pam! Não dizes duas em português, lambisgóia.

saphou said...

Küsschen meine Liebe neue Freundin

Cham said...

Hilarious! And it sounds like you'll definitely make it to Season 4 and still be a well known character if you make allegiances with this awesome Arizonian.

Micci said...

Nicely written... I just flew back from Los Angeles yesterday, but I didn't fly alone. I never fly alone; I think airports are intimidating, what with all the security and gates and numbers and times and...-gahhhh. 8-P

Westcoastgirl said...

haha Great story, I remember flying alone as kid, it was so fun and kids are the greatest to sit next to because of all their toys!

maparatus said...

haha that kid will be the next johny depp :D

maparatus said...

because he's so cool

Maggie May said...

good writing, storytelling, hello!

jenny said...

to the author of this blog, did you ever wrote a blog that contains about e commerce?shopping carts?e business?basically it's all about having a review on a certain SC. if so, please have your review sample link commented on my blog.
well, contact me ASAP if you did. hope to hear from you soon.:D
-jenny

p.s.
this is an open invitation to all..:D

Sobrina Tung said...

Hi all -- so glad you liked the story :) That was some kid!

Michelle- I love LOST too (if you couldn't tell haha). I didn't know this upcoming season was going to be the last one!

Punkystarfish -- that is HILARIOUS. Reminds me of something I'd see on FMyLife.com

Hunter -- I was considering your strategy today, but then realized I was sitting at the wrong gate and was so flustered running to catch my plane I forgot to try it out.

Saphou -- no Portugeuse for me :/

EchoStatik -- you were the upper echelon of cool with the light up variety.

mathlabour -- Sorry, don't know a Dr. Tao.

sugar_snap_tiger said...

my favourite thing in the world is that you said 'ridden a plane' and now im going to start saying it too. because i cant help but copy.

Lady Tacet said...

your post made me laugh.
I'm glad that I bumped into it because I needed a good laugh.

geek3y said...

Wow, I am definitely glad I came across your blog. Fabulous story - I agree with missyellowjeans!

brujita_81 said...

Love your blog!

Alley Genuine said...

(: I like your blog ALOT!

The Zahir said...

Wow, I know I would have been terrified at his age flying by myself, but my kiddo's probably wouldn't even think twice about it. Found your blog listed in "Blogs of Note" loved the story, you're writing is very inviting.

Sobrina Tung said...

Hi The Zahir, from these comments I guess it is common now to have kids flying by themselves, what with their DS's and personal DVD players and iPods and all. Too bad I just had my scrunchy to keep me amused when I was young. ;P

Everyday Girl said...

Hahaha. I ran into your blog... glad I did. You have a way with thoughts... it's amazing you do not digress as much as the rest of us... great blog, I will def be back for more!

L'Amour said...

Just nice

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...