Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Travel tales: Avast ye maties

On the way to Memphis, I was waiting at my gate in Minneapolis. I was sitting in one of the massage chairs on the concourse. A man sat next to me in the other massage chair. There was a woman with him. They were both late 50s, I would guess. He kept laughing and telling her to be quiet when she said she was nervous. She sounded kind of dumb, or, at the least, incoherant. He was brash and overbearing.

I tried to ignore them but I couldn't: Every time he said something, he would make that "Aaargh!" pirate sound at the end of his sentence.

"You'll be fine! Aargh!"

"It's a short trip. Aargh!"

"Have another swig. Aargh!"

It quickly became like Chinese water torture.

After a few minutes, I moved to a different seat. I couldn't take their loudness and his "Aaarghs!"

A few minutes more, and we boarded the plane.

I discovered the pirate and his wench were sitting across the aisle from me.

We were waiting to take off.  She pulled a small wine bottle out of her purse and chugged. (Did I mention it was 8:30 a.m.?)

The woman next to me asked, "Where on earth do you buy wine in an airport before nine in the morning?"

Then the wench fell asleep.

He woke her up.

She asked if we were going to go north.

No, he told her. Memphis is south. Aaargh.

She fell asleep again.

He poked her until she woke up. She asked where they were going.

"You know where we're going! Aaargh!"

She didn't. She was either super drunk or super stupid.

The woman next to me muttered, "I wish he would just let her sleep."

We still had not taken off.

Her head fell over again. He kept talking. Loudly. People in other rows were staring.

(I am so angry at myself for not taking notes. I was so sure I would remember all the details. But he would not. shut. up. And every single phrase ended with, "Aargh!")

We took off. He woke her up to make her look at all the snow. Because someone who has been in Minneapolis sure doesn't know what snow looks like.

The flight attendant made the announcement that beer and wine would be available with the  beverage service, but only with a credit card  - they would not take cash.

The pirate pulled out his wallet, the wench opened her purse. Each pulled out a twenty.

I turned to the woman sitting next to me, who was also watching the drunks. I raised my eyebrows. She raised hers.

"They were drunk when they got on the plane," she said. "I couldn't believe they let them board. They must have been really well behaved when they went through the line."

The flight attendant came to our row. The drunks ordered a Miller Light each.

It was now shortly after 9:00 a.m.

"I can't believe she's going to serve them!" I hissed to the woman by me.

The flight attendant bent down to pull the beer drawer open.

I am not a big fan of tattletaling, but I am even less a fan of being stuck on a long flight next to getting drunker loud people. As in, my personal comfort comes way before your right to live your life as you see fit. Live your life as you want - as long as you do not infringe on mine.

I have no tolerance for drunks. I had not been exposed to many drunks until I met SH's parents and that's when I decided I want nothing to do with people who are mean when they are sober and get even meaner when they are drunk. I do not have to be around them and so I am not. I don't care if people drink - I don't even care if they drink themselves to death - but I do not want them around me when they do it.

So when the flight attendant bent down to open the beer drawer, I whispered, "I think they have already had a good amount to drink."

Without turning her head, she whispered back, "That was my impression as well. Thank you."

She stood. She did not move the cart, which bugged me, because I wanted to see what happened next. Still, I could hear.

Quietly, she said, "Sir, I am afraid that I will not be able to serve you. It is Delta policy not to serve alcohol to people who have already had what appears to be a lot of alcohol."

(Those are not her exact words - again, I did not take notes, even though I should have. But she was nicely telling him that they do not serve people who are drunk.)

The woman next to me whispered, "Is he going to pull out a cutlass and threaten to swashbuckle?" 

I waited for him to argue.

He did not.

Not one word. Not even, "OK, yeah, I know."

(If this had been SH's dad, there for sure would have been arguing. And threats. And anger. Which is part of why I do not like being around drunks. I don't need anger and hostility in my life.)

He didn't say a thing.

Not even, "Aargh."


badger_doc said...

You have such an adventurous life... Nothing like this ever happens to me. The worst thing I had on my flight down to Atlanta yesterday was a crying baby. :-)

John0 Juanderlust said...

You are one hell of a writer, if you ask me.

Class factotum said...

BadgerDoc, a crying baby on a plane is pretty bad!

JohnO, thank you. :)