As a long-time, frequent flier, I can admit I have a very different view of travel than I did as a college student heading to spring break in California for my first big trip without the family. On that trip, I was so excited to be on the plane, I am a long way past it.
And yet, when I think of unbearable travel days one of the worst involved having to sit in a middle seat next to a woman who was wearing strong perfume. I turned the air vent straight into my face and had windburn by the time we took off. After we were at a cruising altitude, I got up and went to the back of the plane to the bathroom, but I really just wanted to stand in an area where I could freely breathe. The galley in the back would be my refuge. After a while a flight attendant said I should return to my seat so I explained. She told me to take a seat in the back and I felt like I had been saved.
Recently, being relegated to a center seat on the long flight back from Arizona brought back memories of that terrible day… It struck me as a reason to share a photo on social media.
So when I saw my friend Don pose the question “What’s worse than flying in the middle seat?” and saw that the comments had been flying, I had to check it out. Seems quite a few things rise to the level of being worse than the middle seat for some folks:
- Sitting right by the toilet
- Missing the flight
- Having a baby sitting next to you
- Middle seat between two really big folks
- Sitting next to folks with smelly food, perfume, bodies, etc.
Takin’ it up a Notch
As the thread went on, creativity became a bigger piece of things as we got variations or builds on the standard. Here are a few that especially made me smile.
- Sitting next to a stinky ? restroom at the back of the plane
- Sitting in the aisle next to you in the middle seat. 🙂 You asked.
- Middle seat between someone with a crying baby and a person reading a newspaper on the other. on an international flight!
- A flight with no drink cart!
- The seats on both sides suddenly disappearing.
- Economy, being ducked tape to the wing
People who Seem Scarred for Life
The comments that really grabbed me though were the ones that had a lot of details…. like the person couldn’t quite get over an experience they had or maybe they just have a really creative mind! Either way, these answers were funny and jarring! And made a question like this totally welcome!
- Switching your flight to a better option, your new flight gets cancelled, original flight makes it home without you.
- Flying in the window seat with a case of the trots.
- Waking up late, driving 90 minutes to work, then realizing you didn’t bring your computer? I mean, that’s what I hear
- Circling for an hour and a half due to high winds on the tail end of an already 13 hour flight. (Narita, Japan) While in the middle seat of the middle section of a 777. (only English-speaking passenger in the row)
- Falling out of the sky in the middle seat.
- Riding in a jump seat facing the back of the plane!
- Is it worse than the time you had to sit next to me on the entire flight? Because you acted like that might be rock bottom.
- Someone throwing up in a barf bag on a very bumpy flight sitting next to you, and feeling very motion sick myself.
- Sitting next to someone hacking coughing the whole flight when you are at the start of a vacation.
- Middle seat, 2 hour tarmac delay, screaming toddler in the row behind you who thrusts both legs into the back of your seat with each cry.
- 8 hour overnight flight with a child in the middle seat who kicks in their sleep and the parents don’t even try to help.
- Being 5’2″, middle seat, and two drinking guys each topping the “300” club. And I don’t mean the Roman 300. BTW it was a 7 am flight 4 hours long and they were drinking double Jacks! Thank
- Someone changing their baby on the tray table next to you…. and then getting yelled at that ” it is only pee!!!” when you try to lean away a bit…..
- Any seat with a kicking, seat back pulling whining girl that you think is about 6 or 7 and has you get to the gate you see she is 13 or 14 and flying with Mom!