Thursday, March 1, 2012

Airport Rule #1



Not to worry, this is not another series, just a post and a relatively short one at that as there is only one rule: Dress nicely and be polite. Now, I am sure that my fine readers (and ps. I had the chance on my trip to meet some folks who complimented me on you all) know this and put it to practice. But we can all use a little reminder now and again. 


Did I get upgraded, or surclassé on my flight home? I sure did. When I heard "Will Ms. Heather Robinson please come to the desk for a new boarding card?" I thought a silent "Yippee!" but kept quiet and did my best Audrey Hepburn in Roman Holiday imitation as I casually approached. True, at the initial check-in, I had begun with "Good Evening," concluded with "Thank you so very much" and avoided making any kind of desperate, wishful comments upon learning that Economy was full. As for being polite, well, as someone who worked in luxury hotels in my younger days, I know that 85% of people are nervous when they travel. And nerves do not a polite person make. Those other 15% are like a ray of sunshine. So, Keep Calm and Carry On. 


The attendant had already given me a quick once-over immediately at check-in and was well aware that I was not wearing sparkly bunny slippers on my feet (as was one of my fellow passengers, I kid you not) nor a velour tracksuit marked with embroidery across the derrière. I have to say that I am at a bit of a loss as to when and how it became the norm to wear such attire in such a situation. Now, don't get me wrong, I am (a little wistfully) not of the hat and gloves generation but really, I have respect both for myself and for the act of travelling itself, which is nothing short of miraculous. Black stretchy jeans will do just fine in a pinch along with a simple sweater (ok, and my beloved pashmina didn't hurt). And do you really need to carry on your bed pillow? Methinks not. 


Call me a little punchy with the jet-lag...I am! But at the time I was très, très contente to sip a 2006 Saint-Estèphe as I zoomed over the Atlantic as well as to have been given an adorable little gray patent vanity kit (you have to love that term) with socks, moisturizer, etc. (pps. On long haul flights when I am in economy, I always look to snag an untouched one from Business on the way out--brushing one's teeth does wonders for jet-lag). True, that feeling was nothing compared to the real happiness that surged up into my throat as I descended the escalator in Marseille and Remi and Ben slid into view. 


I had a truly wonderful trip. Nothing but great moments. And just so much love from my Mom and Sister. It was like being swaddled in the finest silk every single day. Except better. As usual, I took far too many photos as I really think Ann Arbor is a fantastic town so I will be doing a bunch of short posts (please don't feel pressured to leave comments!) once I get unpacked and there is slightly less fog on the brain. It feels good to go, good to come back. I love travelling. 



22 comments:

  1. I know you love your Mom and Sister but there's nothing like coming home to the men who adored you huh? Glad you had such a nice trip, rest up!

    XX
    Debra~

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That is so sweet Debra, thank you!! Heading off to sleep right now, let's hope that my jet lag isn't too ridiculous and that I can get some z's. Bisous to you and Dylan dog. :)

      Delete
  2. Yay Ann Arbor! Can't wait to hear what you did and where you ate! And me, I'll be in Arles next July. Who knew?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oooh, are you coming for the Rencontres? We have to meet up!

      Delete
  3. Oh Heather,
    What a surprising post!! I liked it!! Haha!! Loved the way you are telling this!!
    I am curious about your next posts about your trip!
    Enjoy the evening my friend!
    xx
    Greet

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Greet, you are so fabulous. I have loved all of your projects lately! And yes, I had a very good evening, merci! Bisous!

      Delete
  4. First up, is that your gorgeous bag in the top photo? No wonder they upgraded you! All class & elegance!

    Secondly, oh to travel, to travel, to travel. Absolutely nothing like if for stimulation of the soul & mind. Anywhere will do, as long as it is different to home. And then, the fabulous homecoming - because it is only when we leave it that we seem to truly appreciate home. Why the hell is that?? Nuts, but there you go.

    And as for what people wear, my husband is forever telling me off for staring at people, but I love to see what other people wear, & how they wear it, and airports are one of those really interesting places to observe human life. Some so glam, some (way too many) outright daggy. Ooch. Sparkly bunny slippers...groan, groan...

    Thrilled that you had a great trip and have arrived safely back home. Now bring on those photos! I would love to see them. x

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I loved your response--it made me laugh out loud even in my groggy state! It's all so true what you say...as always. And yes, that is my bag--a little leopard goes a long way as you well know. :) Can you believe that Remi and I used to travel together all over the world non-stop for our living? Addictive like a drug!

      Delete
  5. RIGHT ON!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!The clothes people wear out in public!I dare say you missed the generation that wore their PJ's to school!!!!!!!!!Really very unbecoming.Donot go to an opera Heather in the USA !!Its absolutely sad what people wear to such an event in such a beautiful building.For me part of the experience is people watching and believe me jeans and a t-shirt donot go well at an opera house.I'm off track.........airport.Wasnt long ago we "dressed" to fly!Are you old enough to remember that?I bet Ben was soooooooooooooooooo HAPPY!Remi too!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You know what? We went to see Wynton Marsalis play and I have to say that the vast majority of people were appropriately dressed--you could tell that they had at least made an effort! And yes, I most certainly remember "dressing" to fly--as you said that really wasn't that long ago and applied to kids too!

      Delete
  6. I always dress properly when traveling, even on some bullet holes ridden old Fokker airplanes flying over African deserts or Asian landscapes... I try to upgrade with milage whenever possible...being a scared flyer I need a flat bed to sleep otherwise i go through hours of anguish. When traveling in, as i refer to, the cattle class, I always have one of my "bags" with toiletries, Xanax,and my I phone. These bags are fabulous for jewelry storage...
    I just do not understand why in the States, travelers have adopted the "comfort outfits", they can be spotted in the streets of Paris in sweats, shorts T shirt etc... perhaps it is still the french in me where appearance counts. Glad you had a great trip!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Merci, Francine and your response does not surprise me in the least--I would expect nothing less of you! It just feels better to look at least like yourself when you travel. When Remi and I were on the road so much, I had a broken-in Hermes scarf that I took with me on every trip (to use as a head wrap in Islamic countries, to keep dust out of my mouth off road, etc.)--again, to me it was always about respect for myself and others.
      As for your little bags, yes I have always done that too. A little spray of Avene water (what a difference!), a calming moisturizer, rose hand cream, earplugs, a sample vial of perfume plus a bit of makeup for the end of the flight and lip balm. I feel your pain about being scared--I can only imagine how hard that must be for you as you love to travel so much--it is a big price to pay. But oh so worth it! And yes, I back you up on using your points to upgrade whenever possible--for you it really must make a huge difference!

      Delete
  7. Appropriate dress and behavior never hurts.
    Best...Victoria

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. And as my Grandma Grover used to say "being nice doesn't cost anything". :)

      Delete
  8. WEre you flying standby perchance? Know the feeling oh too well. You will love this: On leaving Paris this last Jan. my travel buddy who works for an airline, was called up to the desk. The lovely French girl said, "Madame you will have Business Class.". I stepped up next and she looked very sad and said, "And you will have economy......Just Kidding! and gave me a big smile. I've never known the French to be quite so lighthearted and needless to say I was overjoyed to be having a mimosa to sip on the plane.

    About the dress. I'm appalled at how people dress on flights. I saw someone coming from Paris in what appeared to be pajamas!
    V

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh I love that story!! And yes, a bit unusual for the attendant to be so silly with you but tant mieux! I actually wasn't on standby but booked in coach, which honestly on Air France is not bad at all. The Paris-Detroit planes are 2-4-2 in terms of the seat configuration, which makes a huge difference. On the way over, I was on the aisle with only one gentleman next to me. He was a farmer just coming back from his first trip to Europe. He lives in Illinois so I am hoping that neither he nor his family were effected by yesterday's tornados.

      Delete
  9. Always love an upgrade!! So glad to hear you had a wonderful trip. And of course you can imagine how I feel about the state of travel attire - I'm sure you looked appropriately chic!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Merci, Stacey! I can't imagine you in coach but am sure you are the most fabulous passenger there if you are. :)

      Delete
  10. What a great treat. Being polite and cool always pays off, you're right. And for you it paid off big-time.
    Welcome 'home'. I'm so happy for you to have a warm, loving family on both sides of the Atlantic.
    bisous,
    aidan

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks so much Aidan--that felt like a hug! I know you must understand how hard it is at times to be so far from the rest of your family but yes, it does feel wonderful to have been welcomed home! I know that I am behind on your blog, will visit soon. I am still so jet-lagged! Arrgghh...
      Bon-weekend,
      Bisous,
      H

      Delete
  11. Dahhling, I enjoyed your observations of what passes as "casual" travel clothes, never mind appropriate. Shocking indeed. How nyce someone of your generation would have appreciation for something else...

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Duchess. Well, of course! We aren't all wearing Juicy Couture, you know!

      Delete

Your responses are what makes this blog so special to me. I love hearing from you. Thank you for visiting!

* Comments left on posts two days after publication or more will be published after moderation. So not to worry, they will arrive and again, I appreciate them all so very much...Merci! *

If you prefer, feel free to email me directly at robinsonheather (at) yahoo.com...