Wednesday, June 1, 2011

In which it's easier to fly

I'm not a big fan of flying. Never was before 9/11 and definitely not after.

But to get to many locales, it's the best - or only - way to go.

I don't fly much, but when I do I grin and bear it.

Another reason I disliked flying was the fact it's hard to fly when you're fat.

The seats seem too small, there's not a lot of room and that seatbelt is always a worry. I never had to ask for an extension, but it was very, very close. I always saw a seatbelt extension as another whole serious level of fat, as in a short hop to having to buy two seats.

When I'd fly before, I'd get to my seat, throw back the armrest (couldn't afford to give up those few inches) and extend the seatbelt as far as it could go. I'd plunk down and pray I'd get the belt to click. It was a stressful few minutes from the time I entered the jetway until I heard that click.

Then it was just plain uncomfortable for the duration of the flight: wedged in a seat, hoping the person(s) in my row didn't have to get up and use the bathroom. And lowering the tray table? A snack and a drink aren't as fun when the table is pressing into your gut.

Fast forward to two weeks ago today when I entered a jetway for the first time in 4 years. There was no stress, no anxiety (apart from my whole normal flying anxiety, that is).

I got to my seat, got my 5-year-old situated and buckled, left the armrest down (thankyouverymuch) and reached for the belt. Not only did it click, it was way too loose. I tightened it and then grabbed my point-and-shoot to get the picture above of all the leftover belt.

The picture won't make it in our Disney album, but I sure won't forget it.

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