Flight Stories

Today is an at home day. Well, not right now because I’m in an airplane, but I’m on my way. I am sitting next the The Rudest Lady in the Whole World.

I offered her the empty seat next to me because I felt so bad for the poor mom with the tiny baby that she was originally supposed to sit next to. The baby is maybe five or six months old and cute as a button. Mom was already on the plane when I boarded and found my seat, which was by some stroke of luck upgraded to the comfort zone, the section that is not quite first class but is a little more roomy than the standard seats.

The Rudest Lady in the Whole World started complaining about the baby just as soon as she sat down.

“I didn’t bring my ear plugs,” she said, “and I’m really sensitive. I text my daughter and told her I was seated next to a baby and she told me to ‘be nice’.”

The mom was trying as hard as she could not to be rude right back. She smiled in that strained, “I-can’t-believe-we’re-stuck-next-to-you-for-the-whole-flight way.

All I could think was how The Rudest Lady in the Whole World had ust mentioned that she had a daughter, but clearly had forgotten what it’s like to have a baby. There is not any mom I know that likes it when her baby cries!

So, even though I could have had two nice comfy seats to sprawl out on in the lap of luxury, I tapped her on the shoulder and told her the seat next to me was empty if she wanted it.

The mom and I exchanged a look and she mouthed “thank you” to me behind The Rudest Lady in the World’s head.

So Rudest Lady moved over by me and you would have thought that would be the end of it, wouldn’t you? BUT NO.

She kept going on and on about being stuck next to a baby. She took out some Kleenex and started ripping it up, offering me some chunks.

“Do you want ear plugs?” she offered.

“No thanks,” I said.

“They really do help when that baby starts screaming which I’m sure she will,” she said. She stuffed some Kleenex in her ears but then she kept going on. I briefly reconsidered the ear plugs to save me from not the baby, but her.

It went on long enough that I turned to the mom with the baby and said, “If you need someone to hold your baby I would be more than happy to.”

We exchanged another one of those looks and she thanked me and I told her how cute her baby was. She is dang cute, I wasn’t even just being nice. She’s got a full head of hair that kind of sticks up on top- how could anyone not instantly love a doll like that?

On the way out, I sat behind The Nicest Guy on the Airplane. There was a mom with two kids, aged about two and four, so the youngest sat with her and the four year old sat across the aisle with Nicest Guy. The little girl was nodding off before the plane even took off, and Nicest Guy reached over and caught her head before it slammed into the armrest. He asked mom if she had a blanket, which she dug out of her bag and handed to him. He rolled it up in a ball, put it on his shoulder and leaned her head against him. When the plane took off he held her head again and pushed the seat back, keeping the little girl leaning back and over on his shoulder for the whole three hour flight. It could have been an entirely different situation, long and stressful, if he were like The Rudest Lady in the Whole World.

So if you’re going to be flying anywhere, and you get seated next to a small child, try to be the Nicest instead of the Rudest. After all, we’re all in this together.

P.S. So far baby’s been sleeping the whole way.

Have a great day,

Nic

P.P.S Got to hold happy baby while mom went to restroom. The Rudest Lady in the Whole World said, “I like THAT baby” when we landed.

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