Friday 20 September 2013


What is it with humans and queuing? People have their slotted seats on a plane but there is still an impatience, bordering on fury, that compels 90% of people checked on a flight to sit as close as possible to the departure gate so that the moment boarding begins they can be one of the first on the plane.

There is an announcement that in the first instance they are boarding rows 15-40 only, some people are genuinely devastated. “But I’ve been here since the gate was announced and those five have only just walked up from the cafe, how can they be allowed to get on before me?” their pursed lips suggest. A middle-aged couple seem to be on the verge of abandoning their holiday when the rows allowed to board is widened to include 10-15. They look at their boarding passes, specifically the number nine in the small box headed ‘row’, like Americans viewed communism.

I have brought a lot of reading material to the airport. There are about two hundred books on my Kindle, including a list of 12 books I have challenged myself to read while on holiday. And I have two paperbacks. So, logically, I buy three magazines in WH Smiths. A man’s reach should never exceed his grasp. Or something.


Speaking of people who are dicks, I was sat next to a young scouse couple and I was judging them a little bit. They were being quite excited by the whole thing. I know, terrible aren’t they? Fancy a young couple going on what was probably their first holiday together – and it seemed flying was quite novel for them – being giddy. I was being nice to them, they were aware they were being giddy and were a bit embarrassed by it (they sound like horrible people don’t they?) but was still being a bit annoyed by them. They were doing some crosswords in a puzzle book and being quite bad at some straightforward answers.

Don’t judge me too harshly I don’t half get a bit stressed out on an airplane*. Anyway, for some reason at one point the lad had his sunglasses in his hand. They were still in the plastic sleeve and had the price on them. And this made me feel a right cunt. I don’t know why particularly. I have no sunglass snobbishness, mine were about £1.50 in a Marks & Spencer sale.


People seem bewildered that not everything will be luxurious when they book a mid price range package holiday. People do really want it all. If you want everything to be very high quality and involve no waiting then you’re going to have to stop being a nobody from the North of England paying £700 for a week in Tenerife and start being a rich person paying a lot more money.

Don’t get me wrong there was nothing cheap about the experience at all, save for the passengers, but there is a little wait for the coaches to take people to the hotels and people are not happy. People are shaking their heads in disgrace at the short wait. The wait suits them however as they all need to chain smoke cheap cigarettes for 20 minutes having been without a cigarette for four hours.

There are also inexpensive taxis available that would vanquish the brief wait but no, no, no: they would prefer to wait and moan and smoke. There isn’t, however, somewhere to but cigarettes. I never remember that flying stresses me out (what with the immensely small probability of anything going wrong) and leaves me requiring a cigarette. A cigarette I won’t have about my person because I generally don’t go about with smokes, as people in prison call them, about my person.

Really wanting a cigarette being surrounded by lots  of pricks who have cigarettes being annoying means that my judgement of them all is definitely fair.

What one particularly needs when one is in the grip of a nicotine craving is not to be able to operate the cigarette machine in the hotel lobby. And then to get shown a room which your partner isn’t happy with, thus necessitating going to look at another room and then agreeing that the other room is better, even though it is all much of a muchness to you. And then getting lost in the corridors of a large hotel.

I almost the same experience the last time I was abroad so I have little sympathy for myself, though of course I am not really that fond of myself. Learning from one’s mistakes is a valuable lesson I refuse to learn. That’s right: I haven’t learned from my mistake of not learning from my mistakes.

Postscript: I eventually found a cigarette machine and enjoyed a cigarette with a cold Cruzcampo.

*Not as confused as I get by what the word is: airplane? aeroplane? flightbus? cowabove?

This was the only picture I took on day 0.5

This was the only picture I took on day 0.5

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