After going for a long weekend break to Madrid I can safely say that the airport can be the most exciting and most stressful place in the world and it is all down to the people you meet.
1. The security man who assumes every single person is a seasoned flyer when you are unsure about what goes where and then also makes you feel like a criminal because you have no idea and want to get things right.
2. The foreigner travelling home who constantly stops in front of you because they have no idea where they are going. (You get to be this person on the way back so hope for some good karma and help them out even if it is the fifth time an abrupt stop has caused you to wheel your suitcase over your own foot!)
3. The duty free sales rep who has been up even longer than you have and doesn't get to go on holiday once they leave the sardine tin which is the store, and therefore comes with an attitude to match. After being one of these people for a summer, I can promise you that a kind face goes a long way. The only perk to the 2am alarms or the 1am finishes is the fact that we'd get to buy things in duty free without travelling, my perfume collection never looked so good!
4. The air steward who will genuinely bend over backwards to help you and who obviously loves their job...
5. and the air steward who won't.
6. The person who insists on taking up all your space so they can have a relaxing ride and a long nap with their seat fully reclined (why is that even an option?!) leaving you feeling like you're stuck in the new Saw film in one of the more twisted traps for the next few hours. I have been drenched where my water has been knocked on me and left in pain where the seat was violently put down.
7. The annoying child who will find about 79 different ways, including 6 where you swear they must be under your seat, to jab you, jolt you and generally annoy you.
8. The lovely elderly lady who has a bag of toffees for take off and offers them to the whole plane like she is everyone's grandma.
9. The person who must get their bag before anyone else and insists being by the conveyor belt, only to pull their bag onto any unsuspecting children playing behind them.
10. The passport control officer who has probably looked at several hundred faces that morning and you can tell is slowly losing all will. I have to say, I feel for these people, I can't see much excitement to break up the monotony.
I feel like flying is a mixed bag of happy, stressed and down right moody. Even so, flying is easily one of my favourite things to do (I even like the turbulence!) and if I could afford to travel to exotic places every day then I would but I guess I better leave it to a yearly treat for now!
Look out for a photo Madrid post coming soon!
- A Twenty Something