Vol. 7, No. 3 | Champagne Flights and Rice and Peas Dreams
Most of the time I write my bullets first and then come back to this little intro. Well, today the bullets are so long, I’m just going to jump right into it.
Here’s what I’ve been thinking about:
At a bar yesterday, I met a woman yesterday who used to be an interpreter for Delta Airlines. I didn’t really understand the role when she said it, but then randomly it hit me and I was reminded of one of the moments that I regret the most in my life. I was on a flight coming back from Puerto Rico over 15 years ago. This was back when real meals were still served on airlines even for short-haul flights. The options that day (as it often is) was chicken or pasta. The flight attendant asked the row behind me: chicken or pasta. The gentleman in the middle didn’t understand her and therefore didn’t answer and so she repeated it a few times as he stared blankly at her. The passenger next to him notified her that he didn’t speak English. So…sigh…she looks at him and says with all seriousness, “El chicken or el pasta.” I wanted to strangle her, but I said nothing and all these years later I still regret it. Ma’am, how difficult is it to figure out how to say the two dishes you’re offering in Spanish…when you’re flying from a Spanish-speaking country. El chicken…el pasta? WTF.
I actually also thought about this when I was coming back from Costa Rica and Mexico and flying on Delta. There were Spanish-speaking flight attendants on all the flights. And now I know it’s because there are actual roles for interpreters.
Speaking of airlines, my friend randomly brought up Air Jamaica the other day. Air Jamaica was the best airline ever. Champagne flights…rice and peas…ackee and saltfish…Jamaican hospitality (don’t let Jamaican restaurants in America fool you, Jamaicans are some of the warmest and kindest people on the planet)…it was the best drinking and dining experience in the sky. Hmmm. I just realized that I normally start my travel experience off with champagne because somewhere in my subconscious, I’m trying to recreate this. Since a very young age, I’ve connected champagne to travel. Wow. Mind blown.
Since this somehow turned into a newsletter on flying, I’ll tell you guys about my other weird flying things. I don’t like sitting in the row right behind a wall. Not being able to put my bag under the seat is the most inconvenient thing ever. I don’t even use my bag for anything, I just don’t like it. I also don’t like having to lift my TV up from the side. Everything about that row, in any class, bothers me. I also don’t care for the emergency row. I don’t like having that much space in front of me. I know this is weird. I like the room in first-class because the seat is bigger, so the extra room makes sense, but without the larger seat, the whole thing is off to me. The worst seat on the plane though is the emergency row seat where there is no other seat in front of you. Ahhh. I hate this seat.
What I orginially planned on writing about today is that I am reading Stanley Tucci’s book Taste. It’s a series of stories and recipes from his childhood. The first recipe he gifts us with is a Negroni that he usually makes for guests at his home. When I saw the recipe, I definitely judged it…hard. After the recipe, he added this note:
(There are those who consider serving this cocktail “straight up” to be an act of spirituous heresy. But they needn’t get so upset. I never planned on inviting them to my home anyway.)
All I could do was smile. That folks, really sums up what hospitality should be. Make what you want, with love, for those you invite in.
Hope you’re all doing well!