Life’s Too Short… to be tall in Economy

80% of my time abroad is spent feeling completely out of place. The aggressive ‘queuing’ system in Italy, deadly-serious karaoke singing in Taiwan, ghostly-pale sunbathing in Sydney or offensive salsa dancing in Madrid. Despite committing full-heartedly to each activity, I can’t help but come across as a Mr Bean/Hugh Grant tribute act. An excruciatingly, painful awkwardness, that is so intensely ingrained in my rigid Britishness. 

However, very occasionally, a rare situation occurs. Forget solar eclipses, white leopard sightings or a new Game of Thrones novel – it’s a moment where I am completely, utterly, absolutely in my element. And from the second I held my Emirates Business Class ticket in my sweaty, balmy hands – I was home. 


Now, before you start accusing me of snootery and snobbery, I would like to clarify it was a random, free upgrade gifted to me from the ever so lovely people of Emirates. I genuinely believe it was the universes way of apologising to a 6ft 3 tall traveller for budget airlines and their ridiculous hobbit-length legroom. Well, apology accepted! 


Every part of business class felt so unnatural, yet so right. Boarding first, climbing the stairs, champagne on arrival, high-tea, cheese boards – legroom! The flying process suddenly wasn’t the burden of travel, in fact, it almost rivalled the holiday. No longer was I reading the small print for my sleeping pills, double-checking the dosage it would take to induce near-sedation. This was worth staying awake and conscious for. I even doused myself with the complimentary aftershave in the bathroom, just so I could smell extra important and ‘business-like’. 

After we landed, I nodded fair well to my business companions I’d mingled with at the cocktail bar, sipping our martinis and nibbling on the complimentary mixed nut selection. I waddled through arrivals full of French cheese and Australian Shiraz, leaving a poignant trail of Armani Code in the air behind me – something for the next 3 planes worth of passengers to enjoy. 

This was it.

 I was a changed person. I promised myself I would never, ever fly economy again. Life was too short, and so was the legroom. 

3 days later…

I’m sitting on a 2-hour delayed Jet-Star flight (name and shame). My baggage is checked in because they ran out of locker space. On my left is a snoring and soon-to-be drooling overweight Australian hogging both arm rests. On my right is a woman who’s been up to the bathroom so many times I’m tempted to book her a doctors appointment. Don’t worry readers, the ‘Tramp’ is still very much alive and kicking. 

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One thought on “Life’s Too Short… to be tall in Economy

  1. Hi Chris. I loved reading about your flight to Heaven and beyond! You are an interesting writer and a funny one. Could you add me to your list please? Big hugs. Stop by in the Netherlands when you can. We would love to see you and there is always room.

    Like

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