25 July 2009

Overheard in Economy

Passenger: Can I have a diet coke with ice please?
Crew member hands opened can and glass with ice to passenger. 30 seconds later she hands back glass with ice, asking if she can get rid of it. THEN she asks for...a glass with ice.
Crew member: Was something wrong with the first glass of ice I gave you?
Passenger: It was all stuck together.

Sometimes I am a loss for words.

12 July 2009

Dear Left Side of Business Class

Dear Left Side of Business Class

What a cast of characters you were last night . The flight from Denver started out a little chaotic, late arrival of inbound aircraft meant an oh so rushed boarding, it could have gone ugly very easily.  I feared the worst when we started running out of wine and wine glasses, you Denver lot were oh so very thirsty!! Luckily the humor of my colleague Andrew had everyone eating out if our hands within minutes.

Denver's aircraft food catering , is shall we say, uneven at best. The breads we were given to serve were best described as white, whiter and whitest, which is how Andrew offered them. Boy was the purser confused when he went through with extra bread and passengers asked for whiter or whitest. The cheeses did not match what was listed on the menu, and the beef we quickly renamed Soylent Green (google it).

These challenges aside, the flight was wonderful in no small part due to the cast of characters on the left aisle where I was working. 9A complained that he was forced to eat beef (well I would too but for the Soylent Green reasons), we asked why as it was his first choice for dinner. He replied he expected to have to eat his second choice so had ordered white wine. That logic was so whack it was funny.

12D, how special you were, in a sort of so bad you are good way. Your gold sneakers made you noteworthy right away. Your telling the obviously gay Andrew that the way to get a woman from Kentucky to give you a bl*& job was to dip your appendage in ranch dressing was  odd. But damn did you blush when I came up to you and said I was from Kentucky and heard you loved Kentucky women ( disclaimer, I grew up far away from Kentucky). You nearly wet yourself when I handed you a container of Ranch dressing for your time in London. 

14B you were so very fun. One of our most frequent fliers, you loved my offer of the chance to disarm my door for 20,00 frequent flier miles. Once I explained that 'disarm my door' was not a euphemism, that is. We upped the ante to the chance to ride the crew bus for an additional 10,000 miles plus an orchid letter. It just got worse from there.

14D, our dear upgraded soldier , how we loved you. You tried to come out of the toilet as the cart was passing, which resulted in a Laugh In style door open/door closed joke delivery. Andrew knocked on the door and tried to serve you in the lav. You almost fell for it. I loved your explanation that the military only needed soldiers to be 10% smarter than their machinery or equipment. This was before you could not figure out how to turn on the reading light. I do hope the tanks and missiles are easier!!

Dear left side, you made one of my last flights based in London a very fun evening!! 

11 July 2009

It Rhymes With 'Cow'

These are some 'found' film from a vacation taken about five years ago, before I had a digital camera. It is only half a roll, the other hundreds of photos I took are packed away while I moved, but I found this mystery roll under my bed, had it developed and was instantly brought back to my favorite destination. Laos.
This is the Buddha Cave, which was at least an hours boat ride from Luang Phahbang. It holds the prize as the place with the nastiest public toilet ever, but also one of the most magical places, as it is a cave filled to the brim with statues of Buddha. I will be honest and tell you I have no idea how they came to be there, or if you could leave new ones, but it was really special as its location was so very in the middle of nowhere. I remember bartering with the boat captains on how much it was to have them take us to the cave, maybe 10 dollars total.

The ladies above were the salesmen of the open air market in the same city. It was a far gentler market than those in Cambodia and Thailand. The ladies kept their babies is laundry baskets, and would provide you with a stool while you looked over their goods. 

The fruit and veg open air market  filed with food recognizable and not. They invited you to smell, poke and taste fruit foreign to you, and giggled as you laughed or squinted when you were caught off by a surprising sweetness or sourness of the food.

These were the monks robes hanging out to dry. I had always imagines that being a monk was a life's vocation, similar to nuns or priests. What I learned was that every man was expected to 'do time' as a monk, for weeks or months. They depended on locals for food, literally having bowls filled each morning. It made them that much more human to realize that the monks robe was merely something most were 'trying on' for a time.

These photographs are really hardly the best of the bunch I took there, only a few from the last roll. It was such a treat to find them and be taken back to the few weeks there is a country with no Starbucks, few ATMs or traffic lights, and a gentler way of life I miss Laos.