Airlines are like boxes of chocolate. No wait--they're like marriage licenses. Or picking out a kitten. I don't know; the point is--regardless of what you've been promised, you never know what you're gonna get.
- American Airlines from Chicago to Paris: broken in-flight entertainment system--no movies! But incredible, non-stop wine service dispensed judgment-free in 350 ml bottles.
- Some flight on some airline I can't even remember to Berlin from Paris.
- Baltic Air from Berlin to Latvia: they made me pay a euro for water--unforgivable!
- Baltic Air from Latvia to Istanbul: unmemorable except that I didn't fall for the water trick.
- Gulf Air from Istanbul to Colombo, Sri Lanka: blissful luxury in our eyes (first flight with companion Kady).
Blissful luxury? Strong words, I know, but it doesn't take much to please these vagrants. First of all, this trip had a layover in Bahrain so I could greedily count a country I've pretty much never heard of as a country I've "visited," and the layover was just short enough for us to buy a bottle of duty-free gin, snap a shot of an Arabic McDonald's...
and RUN to catch our flight.
But this layover meant we got served TWO meals--one per flight. And wine! All we wanted complete with plenty of judgment and a nice side of unsolicited advice from a very overweight strict-vegetarian Indian man who watched Bollywood movies the entire flight (which I in turn watched over his shoulder).
Meal number one was fish and rice with delicious sauce and a giant pile of syrupy sweet mushy cooked carrots.
"You should eat this," the Indian man said, gesturing to my mostly untouched carrots. "Most important part."
I do not like cooked carrots and I do not have to eat them because I am a grown-up lady who flies from Turkey to Sri Lanka on a Middle East airline. But I said something more like this: "I only like raw carrots. The cooked ones are too sweet for me."
But his adminishment was not yet over. "And you should not drink the wine. Is very bad."
I like the wine and I will drink as much of the wine as I want because the more wine I drink, the more I can convince myself my grown-up lady flight was practically free.
I may or may not have glanced at his big fat belly as he offered a slightly giggly apology: "I do not mean to advise you."
And for some reason all I could say was, "Well, I'm 67 years old, so I must be doing something right."