When I start to believe that I might be a social animal after all, I jump in a plane for an inter continental flight, surrounded by the most despicable humans – and it hits me: no, I am not Aristotle’s human, craving society’s approval, acceptance and immersion – it is impossible. I literally cannot stand all these people. So according to the same Aristotle, I must be a beast or a god.
Situation on the left – there is that one person that when he breathes you can feel his intestines rotting. You understand that he is slowly decomposing and at this rate, he might even die on this flight. But he doesn’t – he still breathes and even with his mouth closed you can feel the insuportable stench of his stomach, even with my sweaters and scarf covering my mouth and nose, I think I will faint because of the unbearable and constant smell.
In front of me – must be a large man. One of those that needs mostly an entire row to be comfortable, rather than the RyanAir version of long distance flights. He is, of course, reclining his chair: ”Ça va?” he asks. ”Ça va pas!” I respond with tears of despair, feeling my cap knees crushed under his weight. He continues to recline Insensible to my visible pain and verbal vociferation.
Situation on the right – there is the extremely agitated teenager, he moves up and down, he stands a lot with his ass level next to my head (feeling like pinging his butt with a needle, I don’t have a needle!); his girlfriend dropped something under her chair and he starts searching occupying the whole couloir with his butt up. Again. He’s done with that, he starts picking his nose, he’s unhappy with the meal and his girlfriend starts to ask anyone who’s willing to donate the little Gouda’s cheeses – cheese and bread is the only thing he can eat. His restlessness is giving me an anxiety attack.
My left companion, starts as well, to search something that he keeps in the backpack – he decided to store his backpack under his chair. Now, obviously he doesn’t have space for his legs, therefore he decides to enter into my VERY personal space with half of his body. Meanwhile his breath didn’t ameliorated by miracle, as I hoped, and I am having a hard time to breath trying to avoid the unbearable odour. I want to scream. I think I WILL scream.
The big one in front does not have space obviously and he is just pushing himself in the chair maybe, just maybe, some space will be found in the immediate vicinity of – you guessed it – my knees.
Meanwhile, the teenager starts to read a comics book by using the light of his mobile phone – that goes directly into my face. My eyes are filled with pain from the unfriendly device. The light is cheeky and wants to go off but the zealous reader does not give up and refresh it every 7 seconds by making a light effect that is meant for a techno club.
”Excuse me, I ask the nice flight attendant that gave me some water, seeing me dying slowly in agony, how long do we still have?” ”Let’s see, what is the time in the Metropole(aka Paris)?” ”I don’t know, this is why I am asking”. ”Ok, she says without losing her smile 😊 – it is 02:00 am, so we still have 3hrs55 minutes”.
Meanwhile, a fairly large man is falling over me because he tripped in the darkness on the teenagers legs spread all over the coulouir.
I get another anxiety attack. I am not sure I will make it. I think about my empty island 🌴 and it feels like a dream.
This story is a pamphlet and should be treated as one.