Monday, March 26, 2007

Setting Expectations


For those of you who don't fly often, or who haven't flown in a year or two, I thought I'd let you know what to expect.

Amateur Travelers
My flight home on this past Thursday was filled with what I call "amateurs." It's a standard commuter flight, so usually there are less than 20% of irregular fliers on board, so with about a 50% amateur to pro ratio, I was able to realize something I hadn't seen for a while.

If you fly into or out of any major airport, and you have any of the following expectations, you will most probably be disappointed:

- There will be any food or drink served on board
- The gate crew will be civil, helpful or not cranky
- The flight will board on time
- The flight will push back on schedule
- The seat will be comfortable
- The plan will be clean
- There will be plenty of empty seats next to you
- There will be enough room in the overhead bins to store your carry-on
- There won't be at least 10 planes in front of yours waiting to take off
- The plane will take off on time
- The plane will arrive on time at your initial destination to meet any connecting flight
- The ground crew at your initial arrival will help you make your flight in any way
- You will be provided any vouchers for food or lodging if you miss the last flight of the day
- If your flight gets cancelled, you will get any compensation whatsoever

Don't get me wrong, there are times when many of the things on this list happens, but you can't expect them to, or you will often be disappointed.

I felt awful telling the woman next to me that landing at 5:45 at the F terminal in Philadelphia airport, would not allow her to make her 5:58 connecting flight out of C terminal (the flight was supposed to be in Philadelphia before 5:00).

Current Knitting
This past weekend, I spent most of my knitting time working on (and finishing) the secret project that I can't discuss or show pictures of.

I also searched for, and found, the pieces of the dark tweed pullover, and sewed on the sleeves, and sewed up one side seam.



After this picture was taken, I finished sewing up the other side seam and started knitting the collar. I also weaved in all ends, so all I have to do when the collar is finished is wash and block this sucker.

Another wool sweater finished just in time for the warm weather.

Readers' Comments/Questions
Ellie writes, "Since you do a lot of spinning I wonder if you might help me with a question. I wondered why yarn like Noro Silk Garden and a few others I know of come through with really bad strands of yarn. Very very thick in spots and very thin in others."

There are many reasons for thin and thick yarn, most of which occur because of the preparation of the fiber prior to spinning, or the spinning or plying itself. Even though I've used Noro a lot, I'm not sure what specifically happens to Noro, but I consider it to be part of the yarn's charm that it's uneven. Especially with the Silk Garden, it gives the knitted fabric character.

Lorraine asks if I'd like to sell the Handspun Treasures from Rare Yarns book.

Sorry it took me so long to respond. I just took a look at the book this past weekend, and I think I'd like to keep it in my library. Getting it second hand looks like the way to go, if you can. It never seems to be discounted from the $25 price.

9 comments:

Elizabeth said...

It's mighty dismaying to read your list of things to expect while flying these days. I'm about to fly from Chicago to San Diego with my two wild-boy children, and no other parent along to help everyone do what they're supposed to do! So, we'll get to the airport very early, we'll check just about everything through, eat well on the ground, and cross our fingers for the rest.

Ryan said...

What a succinct list of things that have started to disappear from commercial flights. The last few flights I've taken have been pretty awful but I've naively thought that each incident was a fluke. Guess not! (And I'm not an amateur flyer, having been around the world many, many times. I guess, now, even we experienced flyers have to relearn a few things!)

Geraldine said...

Air NZ have just stopped handing out bikkies on their domestic flights too! Another grand old tradition gone! I do wonder how much they actually save by cutting out a couple of Chocolate Chippies per passenger?

Fredda said...

When did they do this to us? I fly pretty often and each flight has become an adventure. On my last flight, the domestic leg from JFK to Albany was canceled, as were the two following flights. In their infinite wisdom, they drove us over 3 hours north in an unheated bus in late January.

Glad to see your latest sweater. You'll still have some time to wear it. And there are many more winters in your future!

Anonymous said...

Going from my home in Mexico to Chicago takes a whole day when I fly. That involves sitting in an airport three hours before flights and waiting for hours for the next. Being shoved around by customs officials and crammed into a seat that is uncomfortable and being snarked at by one of the three stewards. There used to be seven or eight. The train takes 36 hours and is a wonderful experience. Thirty-six pleasant hours as opposed to eighteen harried and worrisome hours. Gee, no contest for me.

FiberQat said...

It never ceases to amaze me how many people come unprepared for the waiting then get all braying bitchy when they have to wait due to some delay. Then when they get on, they have oversized carryons that take 5 minutes to wrestle out of the overhead bins.

Moooo moooooooo!

Franklin said...

Ah yes, the flying amateurs. I've twice recently been on flights where my seatmate glared at me for, you know, existing instead of leaving that particular seat open on an otherwise full flight.

At least the airlines haven't yet eliminated my one remaining pleasure while traveling, which is watching tall people squeeze into coach.

Elizabeth said...

Hey Franklin, it's not like we CHOOSE to be tall. Some of us are just born that way. ;-)

Geraldine said...

Don't worry Franklin, I am sure that soon they will chop all their legs off in the name of security/cost-effectiveness and deprive you of even that last small pleasure.

I have to fly on Quantas soon so they have just today sent me all the new rules re gels and liquids and 20x20cm see-through plastic bags! I really do think twice before I fly nowadays, because of all the hassle, and I have to admit that I have not been back to the US since all the troubles began. Every time I need to go there I manage to make up all sorts of excuses not to bother! Does all the 'security' actually make flying any safer does anyone think?