My moment of first class glory was quickly extinguished with my flight to Rome. On Ryan Air.
Have you ever done that before?
Firstly, you check in and have to empty your suitcases because their baggage allowance is only suitable for a pair of traveling kittens. Nothing is worse than emptying and exchanging underwear for the world, or the Italian guy with no respect for personal space standing three centimeters from your head, to see. Seriously, I almost punched him and three Polish ladies who don’t’ respect the rules of the yellow line.
See this line? Yes? Well don’t freaking cross it until I have my suitcase on the belt and the check-in lady is waving us away. God. People. Why can’t they all be polite Canadians?
Anyways, once we sorted out the cases, we tried to pay for booked seats. Computer says ‘no’ our check-in lady informed us. I asked if we just run on to the plane and grab what we can. She smiled proudly and said ‘that’s the one!’ How does a computer not assigning seats save money?
Then you wait in the lounge, staring at the TV screens telling you which gate to go to like a runner at the start-line. When the number flashes up, you start the race with the intent on winning gold. Or getting to the front of the line.
This was us. HA! The Engineer said that there was no stampede. I told him to wait.
We were right at the front of the line. However, sneaky Italian buggers kept trying to inch their way in front of us. The cheek! I kept shooting them darts with my eyes.
And all the people trying to sneak in the priority line? Shameless. Luckily the ticket-taker girl was British and therefore rude to customers. She told anyone who tried to get on first to get to the back of the line. I felt somewhat smug watching the over-botoxed, Gucci-wearing, bottle-tanned Italian girl get forced to the back.
Then it was pandemonium. You can get on the plane from the front or the back. Screw the line and respect of personal space. This was war.
And I was going to win.
The Engineer insisted in getting on from the front door. But I was smart. I went to the back. He didn’t know any better. Although many people were getting on at the back, they generally sit down close to the back so they can get off first. People who get on from the front just stand there and debate.
I nabbed two emergency row seats with extra legroom. Take that pushy Italians! I waved to the Engineer who was stuck at the front, waiting behind people who were just standing.
No matter how many times the attendant said ‘find a seat and sit down’ in both Italian and English, no one seemed to get the gist.
After forcing people to sit down, there were a few stragglers. They were told to find a spare seat and sit. It doesn’t matter if they are split up, this sucker isn’t’ going to Rome until you sit your ass down.
Dear god. How simple is this? Not for some. A couple was forced to separate, the man sitting next to the Engineer, and his girlfriend across the aisle. She looked forlornly at him, then at me. I could sense that she was hoping I would be so kind as to make the Engineer give her the seat next to her boyfriend.
Screw you, my glare said, get here early next time. Then I popped a Bassett’s licorice in my mouth and looked out the window.
If this really was war, I had just become the General.