London– Getting Ready to Fly to Meet “My Guy”

Thrilled to travel the world, but weary of flying being the prerequisite to get to most destinations– my conundrum.

Aviophobia was one of the reasons that I had chosen to move to London… so, I could make it my hub for traveling and hop on a Eurostar train to see other parts of Europe. I discovered that my expectations were too high, however, once I learned that those locomotives only went as far as Brussels and Paris (I’d be annoyed if I read what I just wrote from some other whiny traveler complaining that he or she could only get to certain parts of Europe… are you?)

{so unintentionally highfalutin}

A proclivity for control could (easily) have been the diagnosis for the anxiety that I felt (and feel) at the idea of someone else having my life in their hands– the events of September 11th were a factor, but my issues showed up long before that catastrophe; The deal breaker happened in 1999 when two planes crashed, back to back, within a short period of time while I was working for the news in South Florida. The particular incident that mentally scarred me, for life, was the EgyptAir disaster… found to have been intentional; This was the first time that I had heard of someone– a leader, in charge of the welfare of others– being suicidal and willing to harm innocent people as a means to an end.

I’d begin to freak out about elevators, as well, after two people at the Empire State Building survived a free-fall, the result of a faulty cable snapping that was supposed to secure the cab holding the passengers on the 44th floor which ended up at the fourth level in four seconds– this having taken place right before my move to the “city of skyscrapers” and lifts that hit the clouds.

As you can imagine, my mindset for being in an airplane for over six hours was off to a great start. There was a man to meet, in any case. So, I’d shake the nerves, one way or another.

My antidote for curing angst… Jack Daniel’s®.

I’ve always referred to Jack as my “boyfriend”, now that I’m married though, I tenderly call “him” my lover (LUVA” when I’m feeling fancy).

Security at the airport found my whiskey paramour in my carry-on bag. In 2004, strict rules against liquids in-flight weren’t in place. So, instead of being reprimanded and forced to surrender my “medicine of champions”, the male officer, chuckled at his discovery and began to pretend that he was splashing the spirits under his arm pits like cologne! Hahahaa…

My adventure through inspection also entailed the newly mandated procedure of everyone having to take off his or her footwear, following the sad attempt at terrorism by the “Shoe Bomber“, back in 2001. Seeing as I hadn’t flown in a while, I was surprised by the request and exclaimed my relief of having gone for a pedicure before the trip.

It would take a while for the fog of naïveté to lift from over my head before I’d realize that though I had gone through a generally innocuous search, the silly questioning that followed, from a fellow woman of color, wasn’t so innocent–

I was being profiled.

There are always those understandable occasions where it’s necessary to confirm that passengers are getting on the right plane, but she had a look of suspicion on her face as I entered the boarding bridge for the plane.

Female security officer: “Where are you going?” was what she yelled out behind me, as I had already passed her with ticket in-hand, that stated in bold that I was hopping on the Virgin Atlantic (love them) going to London.

Moi: “Uhhh… LON~DON!!!” with a perplexed look on my face that basically said, “DUH… don’t you know where this plane is heading!!!?”

Only after I walked away to enter the plane that I’d realize, it was -apparently- unusual to be a young, black chick, with ghetto~fabulous Macy Grey hair and a blonde streak (that made me look more like “Lady Frankenstein) to be traveling alone to Europe. I knew what her look was because I had received it before on a solo trip to Niagara Falls and regularly while in clubs and pubs; I have always enjoyed being an independent lone-wolf who didn’t need an escort to socialize about town and some people (usually tourists) would be openly amazed by my gumption to do what I wanted (other idiots would take it as my being a hooker, but hey, such stupid mistakes occurred near the infamous Eighth (8th) Avenue of Times Square in NYC… remembered for its era of pimps, hookers, runaways and peep shows… primarily gone now).

This guard was no better– How could someone, like me, afford to go to Europe, alone… and why would I? Only a cultured person might do such a thing. Without question, I was smuggling drugs or something (rolling my eyes)!

Have I mentioned that in all my years of living, I’ve never smoked pot or done any sort of illegal drug… let alone smuggle or sell it!!!?

Whatever… SCREW HER.

And with that, the plane took off.


©2011 Heidi Rodney-Nakanishi and ChocolateGeisha Spills the Sake!™ All images are copyrighted by their respective authors.


3 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Trackback: Dudley Do-Wrong and the Yankee in London « ChocolateGeisha Spills the Sake!
  2. Pamika
    Feb 03, 2012 @ 13:15:37

    Excellent riveew – I had the same experience onboard my recent flight to Bangkok. However, I think Egyptair are busy updating their fleet May 27, 2011


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© 2010-2020 Heidi Rodney-Nakanishi and ChocolateGeisha Spills the Sake!™ All images are copyrighted by their respective authors.

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