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India Journey – En Transit

Have you ever had that moment when you are travelling by air …


I have become increasingly disillusioned with air travel. Sure, prices have come down, but services in many airlines have all but collapsed along with available passenger leg room. One small consolation is that there is, in most flights anyway, an entertainment system where you can catch up on movies you wouldn’t normally bother to see except when you are strapped like sardines into the mind-numbing tin can of international flights.

I travelled alone, for my son Kyle is to meet me from Vietnam, having the honour of being the Best Man at his friend’s wedding. Kyle’s friend Kirk had lived in Vietnam for years now and decided to go all the way and tie the knot. No doubt there will be a lot of great stories.

Traveller Inceptio Rob Shackleford observations
Captain America in Puerto Rico’s flag

I decided to watch the latest offering from the Marvel Universe. You know the movie, the one with lots of different super-heroes, none of whom seem to make the world a better place. I know the franchise is worth billions, but I don’t get it. I mean, Captain America? Is any name so lame? Where is Colonel Canada? Sergeant Australia? Or Major Fiji? The other thing I don’t get is how these heroes stick together. You get Gods – like Thor – who doesn’t seem to do an awful lot in comparison to the others, despite his Godly standing. There is Captain America – who is strong and agile and good looking, and ironically is dressed in Puerto Rico’s flag, and Black Widow, who is Scarlett Johansson and gets all the butt shots. And then there is the bow and arrow guy, and then there is Black Panther who is super lame while being super cool. I don’t see how they compete with Iron Man who flies faster than a fighter jet and fires off missiles as well as being almost as strong as the hulk.
No I’m not a huge fan.
I know these comments will infuriate some, but I just don’t get it.
Across my screen falls the fingers of the person sitting in the seat in front.
Have you ever wondered how to react when some ignorant twat shoves a manky bare foot onto your arm rest, or drapes hair down the back of their seat to rest in your drink or over your TV?
I just sat a moment and stared.

Airplane bad behaviour
How do you deal with airplane bad behaviour?

What to do? What to do? How does one deal with in-flight rudeness. Long ago I decided not to put up with it. After all, most could be reasoned with, surely?
I gave him the benefit of the doubt and left him for a while, but he looked to have settled in.
I shrugged and, without giving too much thought, pulled his finger.
The result was electric. His arms flew up and his carefully gelled hair went up, like a startled cockatoo. I could tell he was trying to process what had happened. The horror!
Hey, he was in my personal space. Besides, my impetuous act surprised even me! Despite my trepidation, I felt kind of proud of myself.
Things settled down and I kept on watching the movie.
One thing I can’t understand with the Avenger movies is the point of Thanos, the big bad guy. I mean, if he wanted to wipe out half of the universe, he should leave humans well enough alone, or have oil discovered off-world. That would make sure half of any life was declared a terrorist and killed.


The Hand was back.
I looked up, perturbed. Was he taking the piss? I was struck with that unfortunate decision. Would I have to say something?
No, it was obviously a habit. He was relaxed and watching his own show. He didn’t realise his nose-pickers were impinging into my personal space.


The next approach was to tickle the palm of his hand. Sort of like what we call a wet-willy, but without the spit on the finger.
That might come next.
The result was even more spectacular than before. The arms almost hit the baggage area above. Again the cockatoo-like gelled hair was up as he looking side to side in obvious alarm. He never confronted me though, so things again settled.
I smiled and watched.
Sure enough, the hand again flopped, but in a true study of the Pavlovian response, barely had his hands hit the back of his seat than they flew into the air and returned from whence they had come, his gelled hair again looking side to side in alarm.
I had done nothing.
And, thankfully, the remainder of my flight to Mumbai was uneventful.

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