This airplane, while not the smallest one I’ve ever flown on, was the worst flying MRI I’ve experienced because– and I hope that I’m not going to get too technical here— THERE WAS NO AIR CONDITIONING AS WE WAITED AT THE GATE AND THEN ON THE TARMAC FOR TAKEOFF… ON A HOT SUMMER DAY… AT MIDDAY.
I’d love to tell you what airline I was on, but I’m not sure. It was some pokey little airline, doing business under some obscure name, for some larger, formerly independent, airline recently acquired by some huge US airline.
In other words, the usual inane flying experience that I’ve come to know, pay exorbitant amounts of money for and loathe.
# # #
As fate would have it two things occurred simultaneously while I was on this flight from hell trapped inside a MRI with wings.
First of all, I had a hot flash.
To be clear, that would be my body spontaneously increasing its core temperature while I was sitting in the middle of the airplane, Seat 7C, where the ambient room temperature was close to 100ºF.
Trapped, I was.
And so far beyond toasty that I could barely keep conscious. I could see my vision begin to tunnel– and I knew that I would faint, unless I thought of something fast.
So I shut my eyes, let my head droop and begin to remember how cold and bleak it was on our screened-in porch in February, when I’d step out there for a bit of fresh air, mid-afternoon, with my mug of hot tea.
Oddly enough this mental distraction kept me from passing out and it gave me an opportunity to decide that, if I lived to tell the story, I’d call out the airline on this unconscionable, unhealthy, inhumane, ridiculous, shameful, cheap-ass behavior.
Didn’t their mothers teach these airline PTB to not treat other human beings as chattel? Hmmm?
# # #
This would be the end of the story if it weren’t for the man next to me on the flying MRI with wings from hell who was an employee of one of the airlines that was part of the afore-mentioned cluster.
And he was taking notes. Lots of them.
And he was telling me EVERYTHING that this flight crew was doing that was wrong, that was illegal according to FAA standards, and that was just plain stupid.
So despite being the most physically and emotionally uncomfortable I’ve been on an airplane in decades, I had the pleasure of knowing that this flight crew, a bunch of yahoos who really should be ashamed of themselves, were going to get in trouble.
AS IN FAILING TO PASS INSPECTION. JOBS ON THE LINE. HELLO REVIEW BOARD [I CAN ONLY HOPE].
It is because of this note-taking man that I can look back on this flight as a learning experience for the crew as well as for me. To wit, I will never, ever in a hundred years set foot inside a Bombardier CRJ 200 again.
And if you know what’s good for you, you won’t either.