Monday, July 14, 2008

The View From the Front

I didn't feel guilty as I sat in seat 1C on the MD90 Jet at Gate D6 in Salt Lake City. I was bound for O'Hare, on my sixth flight in five days. Sure, there were families plodding their way to the back of the plane, laden with baby gear, toddler toys, and 'tween electronics. Sitting in 1C as the flight boarded made me the first passenger encountered by everyone heading back to coach. I busied myself with a video podcast on my iTouch, nodding and smiling at the little ones who passed into my line of vision. Not a moment of remorse entered my soul when I reclined as soon as we soared out of the Salt Lake Valley, feeling that my enduring flight after flight and delay after delay has earned me the right to sit in that seat. Granting first class seats to frequent flyers is almost like the airlines saying "We know that this flying thing stinks." But I earned my extra elbow room during winter snow and summer squawls. I paid for this privilege in the uncompensated hours away from my family – the same hours that would mathematically reduce my hourly honorarium to bupkus. I wasn't feeling smug, only justly compensated for my time and inconvenience.


Kate said...

I've just arrived home this wet Monday night after 2 hours with my Learn to Read student. He reads about 3rd grade level with some 6th grade words thrown in. I figured out tonight that he needs new glasses and his dentures need to be adjusted. My "Kate the fixer" self would like to say I'll take care of the glasses, but I can't. His pride would be hurt. That I can't hurts, because I hate to see him struggle so.

Now you needed to know all this because you're the only one I'll talk to tonight and I needed to say something about it. I know how it is to justify something very nice that I do or have for myself because you and I are both ladies who give, yet somehow we just need to have the nicer or best there is at the moment in time that we are in. And that's ok.

BJNR said...

And well you should be! People fail to realize that time, especially away from family, should be treated like a precious gem.

What's the end of December looking like?

MJ said...

I'm glad you get that perk. Havin traveled just a bit with you, I know how rough the road can be.

Liz said...

I can't think of anyone who deserves it more. Thanks for a wonderful relaxing afternoon with friends who mean the world to me. I appreciate your always open arms more than you will ever know.

EJG said...

When we follow you to Hawaii in March, I will be very happy for the front row seats (and the free booze to keep my mind off of the long flight).