Ode to an Airport
Stale cigarette smoke, body odors, food, and the occasional passed gas. Ah, to be in a crowd at the airport. I’m in the Abu Dhabi airport now for my flight to the U.S. It is crazy busy here this morning. After deplaning my flight from Bahrain, I said goodbye to Darren (whimper) and made my way to the transfer area. The Bahrain airport was sleepy at 4:30 a.m. In sharp contrast, the Abu Dhabi airport is completely abuzz.
The transfer line was enormous. I finally cut in where a couple of people were leaving the line. Apparently it’s okay to be rude around here. People cut in line, walk directly into you, don’t respect personal space, and some people feel it’s beneath them to wait in a line. Those people were jumping out of line and forming a new line all their own. I failed to see their privileged status. Fortunately I have plenty of time between flights, so I can observe human kind in all it’s many forms with a sense of calm. I would photograph people if I didn’t think it would get me in serious trouble.
I was three people away from putting my bags on the xray belt in the transfer line. Suddenly a group of people—I wish I knew their nationality—decided to join the line right at the front. They didn’t try to just blend in, they were actually pushing those of us in line off to the side. An old man with a luggage cart kept pushing his cart into me and trying to shove me out of the way. I was having none of it. I stood firm and did not let him move me. He had no qualms at all about what he was doing. I put my bags on the belt and moved his cart so I could walk in front of him. I needed to move away from that group as quickly as possible. Unreal.
I’m sitting on the cool tile floor near my gate now. The gate won’t open for another hour. I was the first to sit on the floor against the wall. In my peripheral vision I can see a whole line of people on the floor with me now.
I’m amazed by what people wear to fly these days. Anything from sweat pants/sweater/tennis shoes to mini skirt/high heels to complete “I’m about to go for a day hike” outerwear to “I’m tired so I’m wearing my pajamas to fly.” A woman just walked by in clunky black tennis shoes, black yoga pants, and the prettiest white lace tiered shirt with sparkles on it. Huh? My favorite, both here and at U.S. airports, is the young girl with her hair in a messy bun, form fitting top, sweat pants, and Ugg boots. As if it’s such a chore to wash your hair and put on a pair of pants. Am I getting old?