Thursday, January 28, 2010

In Flight Entertainment

I love flying. Everything about being in the airport makes me happy. I must have had the best flying experience of my life en route to Italia, and that is totally a first. Every single thing turned out in my favor and I highly recommend flying with Lufthansa. It is a German airline, if you couldn't figure that out already, and I was incredibly satisfied with their flight crew and ammenities.

I'd spent the night before unable to sleep; I was obviously anxious and paranoid and excited and nervous and a variety of other feelings that one will generally experience before moving out of their country all by themselves. Of course, I hadn't finished packing, either. My mom and I spent quite a while stuffing my bags until they were literally bursting at the seams that night and I was deleriously sleepy by the time I made it to the airport. Saying goodbye to my parents was difficult. My dad made jokes and gave me advice on how to be city-slick and my mom weeped. I'll never admit it, but as soon as they were out of sight I started crying, too. I even cried when I said goodbye to my little dog, who, as pathetic as this sounds, is my very best friend in the whole world.

I cheered up as soon as I got to my terminal. International terminals are the absolute BEST place to people-watch. I do this more often than you might think I would. I know how creepy it is, but people-watching is just fun. There is something so pure about German couples whose version of affection is pushing one another and something so sinister about shifty Russians who never ever travel with other people. The most fun people to people-watch are the Asians. They travel in packs and shout at the tippy-top of their voices when one of their members goes astray. They wear the most funny outfits; fur caps, poofy coats, and plastic shoes!! somehow tied together into the perfect combination with a leather fanny pack. I can only imagine how much more fun people-watching the Asians would be if I were able to speak the language. My flight had a connection in Frankfurt, Germany, so I mostly sat with Germans and Americans (who are about as boring to people-watch as it is watching daytime T.V.). I was horribly disappointed to learn, as American after American went up to the flight attendants to yell and demand to be allowed onto the plane immediately, that our flight was delayed. I spent the extra hour reading and by the time I actually made it onto the plane I'd exhausted my capacity to form any normal thoughts.

I was expecting a packed flight. I was expecting to be cramped, uncomfortable, and miserable. I was expecting to be seated next to some weird German man with body odor who would invade my personal space. Boy, was I wrong. The economy seating was as good as the first class seating on a flight I recently took on AirCanada. The seats were fabulously comfortable, able to recline nearly all the way without bothering the seat behind me. But guess what? There was NO ONE behind me, next to me, or in front of me because the flight was nearly empty. It was amazing. The bars of the seats didn't go up, which sucked a little, but I was able to sleep for about half of the flight. I was praising God for blessing me with some rest when I woke up when what should I notice but my own personal HD T.V. tucked into my seat. Not only did I have a vast selection of movies not yet out on DVD, but I was able to spend my time participating in Lufthansa's ground-breaking Flyrobics program. Whoever invented FLyrobis was a saint. I understand that most people don't want to exercise while on a plane where other people can watch and make fun of them, but seeing as there wasn't a soul around me save the occasional flight attendant, I allowed myself the luxury. I had alot of fun with the flyrobics introduction, where a German man explains why it is beneficial to all those in flight to do flyrobics. It stretches out sore muscles used to being cramped, it is fun, it keeps your metabolism moving, blah blah blah. He didn't need to tell me twice. He then introduced us to our flyrobics instructors, a family of Germans who I named Hans, Frau, and Sophie. Hans was the main instructor, who taught me a series of leg movements that seriously made my sore butt feel much better in my seat. After the leg movements we did strengthening exercises and neck stretches that woke me and and felt incredible. I don't care how lame it sounds, flyrobics was far and away the best in flight entertainment ever devised. I was almost sorry the flight was over.

Frankfurt airport provided superior people-watching. Those damn Germans are so tall; thank heaven for those flyrobics because craning my neck so far seriously took its toll. Their fashion sense is excellent. They love all things shiny. I met a man wearing shiny, bright red Jordans, a shiny red plastic murse, a hat with a bow, and an excellent sweater vest. The ensamble was so funny; it was so difficult to hold in my laugh I was almost choking on it. There was a woman wearing all fur. Fur boots, fur coat, pants with fur embroidery (not kidding), and none of these fur pieces matched in the slightest. She had her little dog with her and I was sure she was stealing his fur because the poor little thing had none. I was annoyed at the payphone which was pink and wouldn't allow my calling card to go through. I was warned by my mother under penalty of death that I absolutely had to call her the minute I landed, which I of course was unable to do.

I got on my flight and met a few of the girls I would be studying with, and while it was cool to meet them I was dismayed to learn that all 40+ of them were from the same school and all friends. I sat next to an extremely tall German man sporting a Fuerher stash and an Italian man who spent time helping me read the Italian paper, La Reppublica. I enjoyed the flight almost as much as the first but was very eager to get off! After getting my heavy luggage and wheeling my things towards the exit, it still hadn't set in that I was in Italy and there for the next bunch of months. The minute I stepped out of tiny FLR airport, it set in. Carabineiri alarms blared in the air, an AGIP gas station was across the street, and my extremely hot Italian driver escorted me to where I needed to meet the rest of my new friends with the most fun accent ever. I love it here.

Buon Giorno, tutti! Arrevedervi, for now!

1 comment:

  1. I LOVE watching people and it's much more interesting to do that in airport terminals :) I'd spend hours and hours doing that!!!