I am not a happy flier. I do it because I have to do it to get places. If there was an option, I’d choose it. Any “it”. But usually there is no option, so I have to fly.
It’s not just the flying that puts me off. Just getting to the gate of your plane can be quite the ordeal with new rules about luggage fees, kiosk check-ins, and crazy long security lines.
And then you crush into those airplane seats which were obviously made for a race of beings that are much smaller than the average human. No place for your knees, your elbows squished to your sides and (usually) the seat in front of you reclined so that it practically touches your nose.
Once I’m strapped in place, I want to ‘escape’! I pull out my kindle and jump into a book and do my best to forget about my budding claustrophobia, discomfort and just a touch of
But, just as I start to lose myself in my book, the doors close, the plane pulls away from the gate, and the announcement comes on “Please power down your electronic devices for take-off.”
Take offs and landings are both times that I especially want to forget where I am and be lost in my book. Hurtling down the runway is not my idea of a good time.
Happily, this rule may soon be changed. Hurray!!
The New York Times is reporting that by the end of the year these restrictions may be relaxed.
Apparently, the Federal Aviation Administration set up a committee last year to look at this issue since they have been under increasing pressure to either change this rule or PROVE that it matters. Lots of folks have argued for years that these devices don’t really interfere with the functioning of the plane. And now the FAA has been pushed to the point of “put up or shut up”.
Senator Claire McCaskill, Democrat of Missouri, has now introduced legislation to make this happen. “So it’s O.K. to have iPads in the cockpit; it’s O.K. for flight attendants — and they are not in a panic — yet it’s not O.K. for the traveling public,” she said. “A flying copy of ‘War and Peace’ is more dangerous than a Kindle.” After meeting with the chairman of the F.C.C. she said “The idea that in-flight use of electronic devices for things like reading a book poses a threat to the safety of airline passengers is baseless and outdated.”
Even the pilots are using iPads, for goodness sake!
I’ll be flying again in June. The reports say the changes will be announced “by July 31″, so I’ll probably still have to turn off my Kindle for this flight.
But hopefully this will be the last time.