Almost an expensive reminder in week 29
I’m still big. No news there. What was news was the almost big problem in the sky.
This weekend I had a chance to go to a Sunlight Foundation seminar in Washington, D.C. I’ll post more about DC later. What I want to get to are the flights.
Why Houston would be a good connecting point on the way to DC is beyond my pay grade, but that’s another issue. It was almost four and a half hours to Houston, then another two and a half to DC. Same time in reverse coming back.
On Thursday I was stressed about the flight, wondering if I would have the same luck on United that I have on Southwest. Being a big guy, a fat guy at that, I had to ask for seatbelt extenders on the flights to Las Vegas, but not on the last flight coming home.
On the first leg Friday I found my seat and learned quickly I would fit just fine, that the seats are roughly the same as on Southwest. I did need the extender, but I had an aisle seat on both legs and the flights generally went fine.
On the first leg back I got the extender and sat on the aisle and it was all good.
On the final leg I had a middle seat and I was one of the last ones on the plane. I got to my row and pointed to it and the guy on the aisle said, “Uh uh, this isn’t going to work.” I told him I tried to get my seat switched, but that didn’t really matter. I was a little frustrated that he was not going to at least let me try to sit in my seat first before rendering judgment. He tried to sit somewhere else, something I was rooting for. The flight attendant was diplomatic with both of us, but told me I might have to buy a second seat. I didn’t get to argue that I had fit just fine on the other three legs. When it became clear there was no way the flight wasn’t going to fill up, I moved over to that middle seat and fastened my seatbelt. I didn’t need an extender. I put the armrest down and it went down fine.
I don’t need a second ticket, but I’m pretty close.
In fact I’m kind of surprised and relieved this isn’t an issue for me more. I’m big enough that some people must certainly give thanks they’re not forced to sit next to me. As it was the flight was perfectly comfortable. I don’t think the guy had a real problem. I told him in the end I was glad he protested, though, because I needed to hear that message, that I make people uncomfortable. Somehow I fit just fine in an airplane seat, but in a way that’s beside the point. It shouldn’t be that close a call.