Friday, 11 May 2007

The Return of the Three Fat Ladies

Those of you who caught my earlier blog about our abhorrant plane journey from London to Florida will remember my (possibly irrational) rant about our seat mates - the three British ladies just a touch past their prime - who snorted, chomped, drank, spilled and passed wind for 9 hours straight. Well as luck would have it, we had just seated ourselves smugly in a row of bulkhead seats for our return flight, and were trying to persuade Egg that Bacon could not sit by the window in seat 43a (we were 42 d-f). Neither Egg nor Bacon were pleased when they were returned to their rightful seats. What with all the palaver, we almost missed the thump thump thump of the giant troll and her two cronies who facially grimaced in recognition as they thundered down the aisle towards us and plopped down one row behind. How could this be? Was it fate? Had there been unfinished business between us that had to be righted? More booze to spill, more gas to pass, more commotion to cause?

I double-dared Jay to make some mention of the previous plane ride, and sure enough he leaned over and asked them whether they had recently partaken of any beans or whether we might have a stink-free flight this time. They looked marginally embarrassed, had the decency to enquire after Jay's laptop and then when the doors shut for take-off had the audacity to fling stinky flip-flops and a bag of crisps on the two empty rows in front - ensuring that they'd each get room to spread out for a kip later on. (I wasn't aware that the same rule that applies to sunbathers territorily throwing down towels on sun loungers at pools at 7am was also applicable to airlines...but there you go.)

Anyway, the flight passed quickly enough this time round, and the ladies once again kept themselves preoccupied with the sharing of snacks (at take-off the huge can of candied peanuts began the merry-go-round of junk food and because it was dark there was only the chewing, burping and plastic wrapping sounds which gave any indication of what they were up to. They kicked off with two white wines a piece and managed to stay pretty pissed most of the night - randomly chuckling at the movie screen and removing their earphones only to call the gay air steward to deliver more booze. There was one small altercation when a teenage boy tried to lay claim to one of their 'reserved rows' and an argument ensued about whether a pair of flip-flops and a manky vest thrown on the seats were enough to ensure ownership. Egg wandered over to one of the ugly stepsisters during the flight and told her that he had done a poo-poo (I was mortified), but mostly he was preoccupied with trying to chat to a totally disinterested 7 year old girl across the aisle. It didn't matter that she had headphones on and was trying to watch a movie - he kept the chat up and it didn't stop him from trying to plug his earphones in her mic jack and play.

Personally, I spent the flight putting Dumpie IN the sky cot, then taking him OUT of the sky cot everytime the seatbelt sign went off (which was approximately every half hour for nine hours). Neither of us got any sleep. As a result I was awake to notice that one row across there was a youngish man who spent the duration of the flight with his older wifes sweaty bare feet splayed across his lap. He painstakingly massaged her rather fiercesome toes ALL NIGHT. In the morning when she had the decency to stip up properly and remove her bare, unshaven legs from his lap, he then changed tack and began silently stroking the inside of her arm for the next hour. It was a great relief when we touched down and both pairs of sweaty feet were returned to their sweaty white trainers from whence they came.

When we finally arrived back to our home this morning, Egg sat munching his cheerios and out of the blue announced that he didn't like this house and didn't want to live here anymore. He then proclaimed 'Grandpa's house' to be far superior and suggested we all go and live in Florida with Grandpa.

Do you hear that Grandpa? Are you trembling in fear? Jay isn't terribly attached to his current corporate role. You could end up with permanent houseguests if you're not careful. Be very afraid.

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