“Did you see 11J?” asked Shirley as she walked into the galley in coach and chucked a wadded up bag of fast food into the trash. We were in the process of boarding and I had my eyes on the bins and bags, not 11J, and as usual the bins were filling up fast.
“No, why?” I said, not at all interested because celebrities sit in first class, not business class, and the day before we had Carol Burnett onboard so it was kind of hard to top that.
Shirley smiled ear to ear. “Go look. You’re not going to believe what you see.”
“It’s that bad?” I asked, before making my way up the aisle, closing a couple overhead bins, turning a few bags around so they were in wheels first, squeezing by passengers who were slowly trying to get to their seats.
Yes, it’s true, flight attendants really do talk about you in the galley. When you’re really nice, or do something interesting, or look and act a little strange, or freak out over something that’s not our fault, we talk. A lot. Then we all must go and take a look at what we’ve been talking about. In this case, 11J.
I didn’t want to look too obvious, so I briskly walked through business class without ever glancing over at the passenger seated in 11J, making my way up to the first class cabin, picking up a few empty wine glasses and collecting a fur coat along the way. I tossed the plastic glasses, hung up the coat, and then slowly made my way back to coach, eyeing each passenger and smiling until I came to row eleven. That’s when we locked eyes. Oh my. While I’ve pretty much seen it all in the last fourteen years of flying the unfriendly skies, I’d never seen anything like this before and I doubt I’ll ever see anything like her again!
Petite with dirty blonde hair, she looked at me with her sad brown eyes. I smiled at her, but she did not smile back. Instead she clicked her tongue and smacked her lips several times, and she did this very loudly. Startled, I looked at the gentleman sitting beside her who immediately began to run his fingers through her hair. The clicking (or was it smacking?) continued to get louder and faster.