“Stewardess, I asked for a window seat. This is not a window seat. Any five-year old knows the difference between a seat next to the window and a seat next to the aisle. Solve this problem. This second. Because the next second will find you unemployed.”
The stewardess whose nametag cheerfully proclaimed her name was Aggie, smiled, apologized, and spoke quickly to a woman standing behind me. With a practiced wave of her hand, she invited me to sit in the window seat.
“That’s better. Now we’ll see if you get my drink order straight. One ‘French Connection’. I’m sure you’re too uncultivated to know what that is, so here’s the deal. I’m only going to say this once, so pay attention. It’s two ounces brandy, and since I’m sure this pathetic airline doesn’t have Henri IV Dudognon Heritage, I’ll settle for the best you’ve got, and don’t think I won’t know the difference. Two ounces brandy, one ounce amaretto and a splash of triple sec. Go on, I’ve got work to do here.”
The stewardess faded, thankfully, behind her slummy curtain where I’m sure several of those polyester clones engaged in all sorts of empty-headed gaggling. The air was stifling and I longed for the comfort of my own private jet.
“I’ll never know why I took this commercial flight.” The statement, coinciding with a heavy sigh, released enough tension to make me realize just how miserable I was. I made a mental note to fire the head engineer at my hangar. He had to be giving me a load of hot air about the jet. Technical problems. Right. I didn’t work my butt off to fly commercial. Heck, I didn’t even fly until after I had made my first five million. Maybe I was just expecting too much from regular commercial flights. Even first class was, well, it just left me feeling… filmy. I made another mental note that this, my first trip on a commercial flight, would be my last. Get a backup just in case. I needed a new jet.
The woman who had been behind me took the seat next to mine. Thank God for first class. The extra space was limited, but allowed me room to turn enough to ignore her.
As I turned, I caught a glimpse of her profile. She looked familiar. I had to turn back for a second look. A bit gauche, I know, but, when in Rome…
She saw me looking and turned to face me head on, bold and cocky. I recognized her and somehow found her arrogance slightly refreshing. The look in her eyes reminded me of myself, years ago.
“Easy, Dad. Don’t worry. I won’t tell anyone we’re related. I wouldn’t claim you, either.”
This was just great. My daughter, the rock star, sat right next to me. My collar felt tight and I resolved to stare out the window for the rest of the flight. It was the best time we had spent together.