I’m going to warn you right now that this is going to be an awkward story. It may be the most awkward story I ever blog about. It isn’t my most embarrassing story, but it is my story that involves the most bodily fluids.
I recently flew from Missoula, Montana to Indianapolis, Indiana. It’s a flight I’ve made a dozen times or so over the years. I don’t mind flying so much, it’s uncomfortable, cramped, and loud. Yet they expect people to sleep on these things. Anyway my flight left Missoula at 5:30 AM, meaning I had to wake up at 2:30 AM to get there on time. I usually fall asleep around 2:00 so I was pretty tired when I arrived at the airport.
By the time I passed through security my plane was already boarding, but since they had just started I figured I had enough time to use the restroom. I entered the bathroom to find a long line. Shoot, I thought, I’m not going to have enough time. I should probably note that any place with a long line in the men’s bathroom at 5:00 AM is the kind of seedy establishment I avoid. That is just not a good omen for the kind of place a particular business is.
I figured that I could hold it until I could go in the airplane, so I headed out an boarded. We had a short wait on the tarmac then a long wait as the plane ascended to cruising altitude. By now I’m getting a bit desperate. The second the fasten seatbelt sign turns off I beeline to the bathroom, hitting and tripping over several other passengers. But have you ever tried to pee on a moving plane? All the bumping and shaking makes it impossible. Sure you could sit down, but the last guy also found it impossible and decided to just spray the whole of the restroom with urine.
After several tense minutes the fasten seatbelt light flicked back on and I returned to my seat, no better off than when I left. The flight goes on for another 3 hours, then do to “mechanical failure” (a phrase that basically means “giant flying bird whose talons you put your life in no worky”) we were sent to a different gate. This added another 30 minutes of taxiing around, like riding in a giant (but impressively cramped) winged bus.
I had a 45 minute layover, but that had passed by the time I got off the plane. I entered the airport just in time to hear the initial boarding call for my next plane which happened to be parked on the other side of the airport. I took off at a dead run and managed to arrive just after the final boarding call. I still needed a restroom.
Now for the part that ticks me off: I ran across the airport to make the boarding time, got aboard the aircraft, and took my seat with 70 other passengers. The plane should be ready to take-off, right? After all, they did rush us all aboard. No, of course not. We sat at the gate, with the doors open, for almost an hour before taking off.
Apparently, and I suppose this shouldn’t be a surprise, you can’t use an airplane’s restroom while it is sitting on the ground.
Maybe the situation would be dire enough for me to overcome my pee-shyness and unleash waves of liquid fury over every surface in the airplane bathroom — just like the last guy did — but the fasten seatbelt sign never turned off on the second flight. There was just too much turbulence. My overfull bladder meant that every bump and every small movement made my entire pelvis feel like it was going to explode.
I managed to last the entire flight though and eventually used one of the restrooms in the Indy airport… but it wasn’t pleasant!