On yesterday’s flight I was the aisle passenger of a trio of travellers. The gal in the middle was a chatty American primatology undergraduate; and rounding out our threesome was a very nervous-looking mother of four against the window.
“I’m a very nervous flyer” began the mother’s apology to the student, “so I might grab your hand if there are bumps”.
The student, sympathetic, replied “I completely understand—don’t worry. I mean, I get it: if you’re in a car accident, there’s a great chance you’ll walk away from it. But a plane crash...” and there the student let a pregnant pause hang in the air, giving the nervous mother of four’s imagination plenty of time to fill the silence with dozens of tragic and horrific scenarios.
The mother finally broke the silence, a distant and sad look in her eyes, “I know”.
For the first time in a long time, I was excited for turbulence.