Monday, October 24, 2011

I always go pee before boarding a plane...

I arrived.  Just barely.  I failed to mention this the other day when I said I was taking a sabbatical to California that I hate flying.  No, I don't just hate it, I'm terrified of it.  I may have alluded to this before in one of my previous blogs, but in my excitement to get away from the adolescents in my home, I forgot this fear until I watched the following news clip the night before my trip.  This, like other horrifying new stories, should come with some sort of prior disclaimer.  I was beside myself in abject terror.  Let this be a warning to those of you who do not like to fly; turn away from your monitor and make sure your sound is off.  This will haunt you for weeks...

As I sat alone in the Denver International Airport, I relived every horrifying memory or every horrifying airplane crash in every movie which has ever had one hoping that I had said the proper good-byes to all my loved ones back in my neighborhood.  And I waited.  And I stressed.  And I considered if it would be bad Karma to start my Rosary only to stop mid decade if boarding began before I were to finish.  Should I go to the bathroom?  I had already gone three times but perhaps I should go again?  If the plane were to malfunction, I would hate to wet myself on the way down.  That would just add insult to injury.  I went again.  Just a trickle but I felt better.

My plane was tiny.  It was a shuttle plane.  Lovely.  Just the world "shuttle" implies open fin-like propellers. These propellers are known to catch lost brothers and sisters of the wild, stupid Canadian geese which fly across the Colorado front range when they've lost their flocks along the way.  Breathe.  Nope.  Hyperventilation had begun.  My relaxation techniques of a finding a crystal clear pool of blue water had morphed into an ugly, mosquito infested, murky basin of nastiness.  There was no hope for me other than to find my little orange bottle with the white prescription label of Valium.

My dose is not a high one.  Just enough to settle my nerves and keep my from shaking like a leaf in times of extreme anxiety.  Lord knows, no one wants to see me in this state.  

I boarded the plane and as usual, as I entered the aircraft, my eyes wandered to the bolts outside the door.  Where they worn?  How much rust had accumulated over time?  In my mind, I entertained news reports of a plane crash over the Rockies due an old, exterior door crumbling away and unsuspecting passengers being sucked out of the fuselage like lifeless rag dolls (again, I was glad I pee'd before I boarded the plan). 

The seats are so tiny.  Why is this?  Can't we be comfortable before we die? AND, oh my gosh!  Really, seat me next to the gorgeous young dude?  I don't want to sit next to him.  I get so sloppy when I weep. 

"Hi, how are you?"

"I'm ok.  Not a good flyer, I'm afraid.  It's time for another med."


"Yep.  This plane's a lot smaller than I thought it would be."

"This is your second one?"  He grinned.  (Geez, what a nice grin.  Isn't he a movie star or something?)

"Yep.  Not one of my prouder moments.  Don't tell on me, ok?"

"Your secret's safe." (Good grief, there's the grin again.  Maybe I should take a third one in case the plane does goes down and I end up pee'ing my pants.  This way at least I won't be aware that I'm doing it...)

As it turned out, the third pill was never necessary.  Judging by the amount of drool I wiped off my face and neck when I eventually woke-up, I assume I was out at least ten minutes after take-off.  Thank goodness I passed out against the window.  It would have been horrifying had I passed out on him.  The grilled ham and onion sandwich I ate right before boarding left my breath in a horrifying state.  It was if that sandwich decided to make return performance on my tongue.  In fact, had it not been for the fact that my breath was so awful, I might have continued to sleep and made the connecting flight to San Fransisco.

In a couple of days I need to make my return flight to Denver.  I've been dreading this adventure since the moment I touched down in LA with smeared eye liner, bad breath, Valium induced airplane hair, and a nervous bladder.  The weather forecast is calling for snow and wind coming into Colorado on my way home.  My little orange bottle with the white prescription label of Valium is ready and waiting. 

Is there anything I'll do differently to prepare for the flight home?  Yes.  I'll probably start my Rosary before the boarding process begins and pop my meds down with a shot of Whiskey. This time I don't want enough time to consider how good looking the dude is next to me.  If I need some one's shoulder to drool on, I can't worry if it's Brad Pitt's or George Clooney's.  He's just going to have to deal with my grilled ham and onion breath because I've got enough to worry trying to hold my water on the way down. 

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