Part III – puddle jumping again
From The Business Travel Log
From my vantage point, the top of the airplane looked fine. Can you just picture me standing at the doorway of the small regional jet, taller than the door, my head jutting above the door and the top of the airplane. Stop laughing. I’m puddle jumping again. Haha, if you are laughing that’s great and I’m happy that I made you laugh.
The flight attendant greets me as I bend way down to walk through the door. I am six feet, four inches tall. Small aircraft, AKA puddle jumpers, weren’t built for me. Nonetheless, I have been riding them most of my adult life. Passengers stare as I walk bent down from the entrance to my seat. It’s a long walk to row twenty on a twenty-five row airplane. Smiles glow from row to row.
I put my coat away, I’d left my roller bag at gate check baggage, then I squeeze into my narrow seat. Hmm, i need to get back to the gym, I think.
As I fasten my seatbelt, I think about a few of the puddle jumpers from past years. My first looked like a gooney bird: Columbia, South Carolina to Charlotte, North Carolina — a ninety mile ride. The big propellers are what scared me the most.
My girlfriend, who dropped me off at the airport, asked “Is your insurance all paid up?”
“Health or life”, I asked her.
“Both”, she replied.
Back to my current moment, I smile as I think about the gooney bird. I raise my window flap. I stare at the terminal. My mind moves towards another memory.
“Good Morning passengers welcome to USAmer flight 49 to Pittsburgh. The aircraft door is closed. Please put away all laptops and transmitting devices and put your smartphones in airplane mode.”
The flight attendant’s announcement pulls me back to my current moment. I’ll think about the other memory later, I say to myself. I leave the window flap open and wait for lift off.