I sat down in my aisle seat on what appeared to be a pleasantly not full flight on Iceland air from Seattle to Reykjavik. And then, I see a mother and soon looking towards my aisle. Guess I won’t have the row to myself. Ok, it could be worse, at least it wasn’t a baby. Almost immediately upon sitting down, the woman turns to me and pleasantly begins small talk, and the kid seems fairly well behaved. Alright…Maybe this won’t be so bad.
I’m flying, I’m exhausted, I’m drinking. I don’t remember everything we talked about, but I know it was a nice chat. She was excited for my trip. We all looked at the awesome kids packet given out by Iceland Air. Stickers, coloring, checklists, (and there was even a meal delivered before the start of the rest of the service). So, I don’t really like kids, but if you have some and you’re flying to Europe, TAKE ICELAND AIR!!! Not to mention on long flights they welcome you onboard with a bottle of water instead of making you wait until the first round of service for a tiny cup, like most airlines. And they have seat back entertainment plus a USB port to charge your devices. In economy. Seriously nice (about as nice as the super friendly flight attendants). Do, however, be prepared to either bring or purchase food, as they don’t include a meal, even on long international flights.
And by the way, did you know you can do a free one to seven day stopover in Iceland?!? I wish I had known that before I booked my Stockholm to Paris flight. Oh well…
Anyways, the really nice lady and I kept chatting for a while. Soon she pulled out some Indian flatbread with potatoes and vegetables, which she so kindly shared with me (I had only had a little bite to eat in the morning, and just had chocolate and some crackers with me… whoops, rookie move). Slightly spicy, absolutely delicious, and definitely filling, I rapidly devoured the phenomenal bread. Several minutes later, the flight attendant came by with the aforementioned kids meal. The mother and child are vegetarian, so while he could enjoy the juice and snacks, since he couldn’t eat the main course provided, they kindly offered it to me. The son didn’t even bat an eye at giving up his spaghetti (he got to keep his Oreos, though, and I had given him a piece of chocolate earlier). Wow. Doesn’t get much better than that. We enjoyed the view of the mountains while we had it, chatted a bit here and there, shared our snacks, and learned a little Islenska (the Icelandic language) from the kids packet.
Near the end of the flight, I offered the kind lady some more chocolate. She declined, but loaded me up with two power bars and a bar of Trader Joes chocolate, on top of promising she and her friends would follow my blog. I’ve learned never to turn down free food, but when some people give it, it means more. Sometimes something as small as a piece of bread and a granola bar can touch your heart, because you can tell the person giving it is giving you their good will as well, giving a little piece of themselves.
Talk about a great flight. I was drinking the not unreasonably (for airlines anyways) priced beer and listening to some great albums on my iPad. Plus it was only a, roughly, 7 hour flight. Score! Added bonus of getting a little more food in me. Even though I didn’t sleep at all, arriving in Stockholm was so much easier than landing in Athens after 26+ hours of travel with less than 2 hours of sleep in as many days like last summer. Now that was intense.
Thanks to a CSer who was helping me study Swedish when I was thinking to move there, I had a ride from the airport, and my host was even so kind as to invite my CS friend to come for dinner! Pssss, so nice … How did I get so lucky?!?
I have no idea what Stockholm, let alone this trip, has in store for me. But damn, I can’t wait to find out! I have no expectations other than it will be a good time. Nothing specific I want to see or do, not on the hunt for a boy to flirt with, just going where I want to see what will happen.
It seems so strange to travel for over a month knowing, at least relatively, people everywhere I go. Last summer when I set off, I didn’t know anyone. Now I have a full itinerary with friends for over a month. What?!? That, if nothing else, should go to show you how if you open yourself up and reach out to people, you will make more fiends than you could have imagined. Seriously I have more friends in/from Athens than Seattle, and I am making more all over.
So peace out and adventure on, friends!