Journey to Wales

I spent a week hiking in Wales. A week without a computer is pretty much unheard of for me. I bought a little notepad in the airport so I could write while I was on my trip. Confined so long to the purely up and down movements on my laptop, my fingers they were overwhelmed by the directional possibilities and took full advantage of the chance to run amok. They were drunk with power. I wrote a lot of this post on that notepad, and I can barely decipher it. My handwriting has degenerated to third grade levels.

I have included a few photos, but my photography insults the beauty of Wales. Its beauty most definitely should not be insulted (its food is another story).

castle
Dinas Bran Castle

I flew from Salt Lake to Newark, where the airline employees worked very hard to make sure we all had an authentic “People from New Jersey are really rude” stereotypical experience. They are paid to do this by the tourist board—on their own time they are all very nice.

I was informed in Newark that I was on standby and they couldn’t guarantee me a seat on the flight because they had oversold it. My simplistic understanding of commerce had led me to believe that my paying them an obscene amount of money for a seat on that flight, and their taking that money (no refunds) somehow entitled me to get on the damn plane.

After a New-Jersey-Board-of-Tourism-sponsored conversation with the agent I managed to get on the flight. An Englishman came on and had just stowed his carry-on when the lovely gate agent came on board and yelled at him to get off the flight. He quickly caught the spirit of how you should interact in New Jersey and began to yell at the gate agent. He was thrown off the plane.

His now empty seat (the only empty seat on the flight) had the most legroom I have ever seen on a flight. No seats or walls in front of it, just the opening to first class. As the steward walked past I pointed to the empty seat and said, “Excuse me, in light of my freakish size…” He smiled and said, “Sure, take it. But you’ll have to slip me a $20 when we land.”

Just as I settled into the seat the enraged Englishman returned. He looked at me in his seat, and at my now empty seat, muttered, “Bloody ‘ell!” and went to sit down. The whole plane was watching him now, hoping for more fireworks. I offered to switch back with him—it had been his seat after all.

moores
The Moors

He thanked me and said, “It’s just that I’ve got these long legs.…” He couldn’t have been more than six feet tall. A passenger next to him said, “I think that guy is taller than you.” Enraged Englishman looked skeptical, “What, are you a bit taller than me?”

I got up from my seat, my head almost touching the ceiling, and stood next to him. “A bit,” I said. I had over six inches on him. The entire plane erupted in laughter. With one last “Bloody ‘ell!” he conceded defeat and took my old seat.

I enjoyed the luxury of my seat until I took a good look at the first class section just a couple feet in front of me. If class warfare is ever to erupt, the frontlines will be where coach meets first class. It’s hard to be content with your lot in life when you are being fed peanuts in an uncomfortable chair and you can see someone a few feet in front of you in a gigantic electronically-adjustable leather recliner with so much leg room that the passenger in front of you is grazing cattle which he plans to sell upon arrival.

I fell asleep with my feet extending into first class, when woke up I found that they had wrapped a hot towel around my left foot and served lobster to my right.

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Josh

Amishrobot is a website by Josh Penrod, a User Experience and Product guy who can't be bothered to use any of his UX knowledge on his own site. More about me

2 thoughts on “Journey to Wales”

  1. They didn’t have a seat for you because they had oversold? I dont know that I would want to fly on an airline where one of the things they admit that they can’t do is count. How high do you have to be able to count to get something like that right? Or is is it more like,”Oh what the heck, ten, twelve or twenty. Its about the same.London, Chicago or Lebanon. What difference does it really make. Picky, picky, picky.”

    I wonder who gets to calcualte the amount of fuel needed for a flight. Over, under, what the hay. “Sorry,but we have under booked”.

    and I doubt that the airline worries much about rebellion in the “lowerclasses”. Who has much to fear from abunch of people partially paralized from the waist down by whatever They are calling the pain racks We are sitting in. When the guy in front of me tried to recline his seat I had to tell him, “thats not gonna work buddy.” If there is going to be a rebellion thats where its going to begin, long before we rush the first class passengers.

    And now I guess we have to wait for another week for the next installment?

  2. Once a guy ahead of me tried to recline, and I tried to tell him not to by pushing hard on the back of his seat. He wasn’t satisfied by my subtle message and kept at it. Each time he tried to jerk it back, I applied the same amount of pressure to the back of his seat. He finally gave it a jerk with his entire body tensed up and let go of the button just in time to lock it into full recline and his victory was a sweet one, my loss never tasted so bitter.

    On another note, airlines never sell out tickets, they just charge more the fuller it gets. If the flight is full, they just charge obscene amounts of money, then plan on kicking someone off later, such as yourself, and give you a freebie later. I think that those same people should be in charge of the economy because this makes sense, pure and simple. Go ahead and try to find a full flight, it’s near impossible, they will always sell a seat that they already sold.

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