Back from visiting the family for Christmas and New Year, I fear that I am becoming increasingly grumpy.
We travelled quite a bit over the past two weeks, and I really did feel close to a bout of 'air rage' a couple of times. I knew that the airports, planes, roads, trains etc would be busy and crowded. I knew that I would have jet lag, and a very active and excited daughter. I even knew that I would get travel sick. All of those I was prepared for, but I just didn't factor in how much stupid I would be subjected to as we travelled.
Many of my moans are epically insignificant, and I know better than to share them with others (oh, go on then, people who let their kids play with the suitcases as they go round the carousel at the airport? Stupid). But there are some people who go beyond being inept or unaware, and actually start to become dangerous.
For example - the TWO groups who stepped off a train, then stopped (right in front of the doors) to work out where to go. When the trains are busy, with a line of people pushing to get out, and another group waiting to get in, do not block the doorways. OK - so that example is inconvenient rather than outright dangerous, but it still baffles me why some people are lacking the basic rules of navigating in busy cities.
Another one - the number of people who had to be paged, repeatedly, to get on their plane. Now, if they are on a connecting flight, they may just be unlucky, but I saw more than one (or two) people rushing to get to a departure gate with bags of duty free in their hands. Shopping is not essential, people, get to your flight on time.
And while we're at it, stick to the limits for hand luggage.
But my real gripe was one that I considered actually calling an air steward for (only I'm too much of a coward and didn't want to get held up once we landed). Across the aisle from me sat a family of 3, including a teenage boy. As the plane was preparing to land, he and his dad kept pretend fighting. Annoying, but not dangerous. As we were on the final descent, I could see that he had some kind of electronic in his hands, and he was tapping/pushing buttons as if he were texting or playing a game. The moment we landed, he undid the seat belt, then picked up a Blackberry and began texting on that as well. He was doing this, even as the pilot was saying that we should still have seat belts on and not be using electronics.
To be honest, I'm fairly certain that he wasn't about to send the plane hurtling from the sky by playing games on the ipod. My problem is, that I just don't get why he, and the other people that annoyed me, don't see that they are in a public space and they should be considerate of others.
Travelling in public means that you have to put up with the sight/sound/smell of other people. There isn't a whole lot that can be done about it. But there are kind of unwritten rules - don't yell down your phone in an enclosed space, don't stop in the middle of a walkway, follow instructions, don't push etc etc. Basically, try to stay within your own space and don't impose on others too much.
OK, so rude and stupid aren't the same thing, but there is a correlation between them. Next time I travel, I shall prepare myself better, and try some kind of meditation to get me over the hard times. But then, won't that annoy someone sitting near me?