Our trip to the Big Apple started on a plane, much like the one on the right here... We got to the airport, no traffic to speak of, and made our way to the ticket agent... apparently, the airline owed me $1.03 on my ticket, so they refunded it to the DAC credit card that I no longer have... c'est la vie. Anyway, no problems with security (theater), and we got to the gate with time to spare. What a great trip this was going to be. We got on the plane, but WHOA! You would not believe the Nazi Fascist Broom-Hilda Waitress (a.k.a. Flight Attendant) on this plane. She was ALL New York (in the stereotypical sense of being a loud grouch). The first problem was that a person on the plane was (of all things) reading a newspaper. WELL... the Flight CANNOT commence until the emergency announcement was made, and the announcement WOULD NOT be made until that paper was down. There was LOUD P.A. berating of the newspaper reader.
I was the next victim. In a foolish act of recklessness, I decided to go to the washroom on the aircraft. We had reached (so I though) a nice cruising altitude, and the waitress was up and about. Well, blaring on the P.A.
WOULD THE MAN WHO JUST GOT UP TO GO TO THE RESTROOM RETURN TO HIS SEAT NOW! YOU ARE A DANGER TO YOUR OWN SAFETY AS WELL AS THE SAFETY OF OTHERS!!!
Yes, there is NO question mark, although technically in the form of a question, it was NOT verbalized as a question, rather a command... one that I decided against following, due to a bladder that was about to blow.
Anyway, that was NOTHING compared to the next threat. As we were about to land, the dude across the aisle from us was daydreaming with his bag on his lap... (she had announced that ALL CARRY ON BAGGAGE MUST NOW BE STOWED)... can you see where this is going? P.A. time:
I REPEAT, ALL CARRY ON BAGGAGE MUST BE STOWED FOR LANDING
He was in a dreamland... didn't hear. Well, she marched right up to him, and tore a HUGE strip off...(sans P.A. this time)
IF YOU DO NOT PUT THAT AWAY, I WILL TELL THE CAPTAIN NOT TO LAND THE PLANE!
He was very sorry... to have gotten on that flight I'm sure.
So, to recap, in a nutshell: 1 Flight, many threats.
Okay, so we made it to New Yak in one piece, thanks to the vigilance of the waitress. We then took a bus to Harlem, before catching the subway to our hotel. The driver spoke a dialect commonly known as "microphone mumble", where he would mumble incoherent phrases into a P.A. on the bus to alert people as to where to get off the bus.
We were so kind as to start the next tirade. Being from out of town, we asked the bus driver when we should get off the bus to head down to our hotel near Central Park. He told us ‘Lexington Ave’. Then a line up of people approached, asking “Is this where I get off to go to
DID I SAY THIS WAS YOUR STOP? LISTEN TO THE ANNOUNCEMENTS!!
Snap… Lose it!
We quietly got off at the next stop.
No, this isn't a picture of the subway, rather a reasonable facsimile of a “homeless gentleman” who decided to hone in on MVG and I to ask for help (do we have a look that invites oddness?)
Anyway, to make a short story long…
(note from author: I’m skipping many details of the New Yak trip in this blog entry to keep this one to the ‘travel’ itself… I’ll put ‘vacation’ part in another entry).
So, we are sitting on the subway platform near Staten Island (we just missed the ferry), when we hear a drunken sounding person at the far end shuffling along asking people how to get to the hospital, he needs to get his broken leg (the one he’s walking on) fixed.
DON’T MAKE EYE CONTACT – DON’T MAKE EYE CONTACT – DON’T…
So, he continues the shuffle… RIGHT TO US and sits down next to me, breathing his foul, putrid breath onto me.
Hi shere… I needsh yor hep gettin to sha hoshpital. I broke mie leg, I need it ficksin. I got it fickzd, but not so good. Whersh the hoshpital?
(note the ‘drunken’ dialect).
MVG (kindly while I pretended not to notice the dank humid person next to me), explained that we were from out of town and did not know where the hospital was. She then tried to help him, asking if he knew in what general direction it was. He then told his life story (in slurrish drunken dialect)… then swung wildly around at the person on the other side and started all over… we made a break for it to the far end of the platform…
Shortly after this, we wore our legs to mere stumps as we completed our 256 blocks of walking around looking for somewhere to eat...