Monday Morning Musings

Posted on February 4, 2019 under Monday Morning Musings with no comments yet

The Rockies

Over the past six weeks, I have travelled by car, ferry, ferry taxi, bus, train (Skytrain in Vancouver) and airplane. I mustn’t forget travel by foot. I covered a lot of miles over the streets and trails of Victoria and Vancouver. I like driving less with every passing day and I’ve become a big fan of public transit. If you have time and you’re not in a hurry, travel can be relatively painless. Of course, every one of us has a travel story that has gone south, and I don’t mean Florida.

I have become a student of air travel and have adopted a few strategies that take some of the stress out of this mode of transport. Baggage is always a big deal so whenever possible, I travel lightly with only a carry on bag. It avoids the zoo around the baggage carousel and of course minimizes the chances of your baggage not arriving at its destination.

I’m always astounded at the whole check in procedure when you arrive at your appointed gate. Everybody sitting in the waiting room is going to get on the plane but when the first pre-boarding announcement comes over the loud speaker, there is a stampede for the check in counter. I wonder if those people pushing and shoving think they’re going to arrive at their destination before the others. Yes, if you’re the lucky one to be first on the plane, you avoid those other annoying passengers banging you in the butt with their laptop bag.

But if you’re the last person to board the plane, you also avoid the pandemonium and that is precisely what I have been doing the last several times I’ve flown.  It’s very calming.

The same holds true at the end of the journey. You know that just about everyone on the plane is restless having been sitting in cramped quarters for numerous hours. If you have a tight connection, then it is imperative to gather your carry on bags and beat a hasty exit from the plane. However, if you have a checked bag, then standing at a crooked angle by the window seat, trying your best to break into the lineup, is an exercise in futility unless you’re 100% positive your bag is going to be the first one off the carousel. How often has that ever happened to you? Never. I thought so.

If you don’t have a tight connection  and you have a checked bag, might I politely suggest that you stay in your seat until everyone except for the flight attendants have vacated the plane. You’ll avoid a hernia trying to twist your body to get amidst the throng panting to get to the exit. If you’re the last off the plane, you walk peacefully down the aisle. Barring a miracle, you arrive at the baggage collection section before the carousel indicator makes that jarring and sometimes annoying beeping sound.

Now those same people who pushed and shoved to get on the plane, then off the plane, are also likely the same ones who push their way to the front of the carousel. By the time they get to their vehicle, they are well on their way to road rage or a heart attack.

If you have the time, try my strategy some time. You’ll be amazed that you leave the same time as everyone else, arrive at the same time and collect your bags within minutes of everyone else.

If you just missed a connecting flight to the Bahamas, please disregard this post!

Have a great week.

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The Macdonald Notebook: Business & Politics in Atlantic Canada
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