December 05, 2010


77 year-old lady I know flew from Bom to the US a couple of months ago. She was in the middle seat of one of those three-seat sets, in between two young men. When the flight took off, she felt cold, so she wrapped herself in the blanket the airline provided and dropped off to sleep.

She woke some hours later. She took off the blanket, left it on her middle seat and went to the toilet.

When she returned, her blanket was no longer on her seat. She thought perhaps it had slipped off onto the floor. No. Between the seats? No. Behind? No. Nowhere.

Then she noticed that the young man in the window seat to her right was now wrapped in a blanket, which he had not been before she got up from her seat. She asked him if he had taken her blanket by mistake. He muttered a hasty "No", turned away and closed his eyes.

She pulled her shawl from her handbag and wrapped herself in that. Before she fell asleep again, she noticed that the young man in the window seat to her right was actually wrapped in two blankets.


Anonymous said...

Well. What kind of story was that? The youth was obviously fast asleep and accidentally pulled over the blanket. It's cold in the window seats. Or he was a corrupt official maybe?

Dilip D'Souza said...

It's cold in the window seats.

Not if you remember to close the window.

Madhat said...

Flying in from Delhi yesterday, young man first agrees to switch his aisle seat with an old lady who had a window seat (I had the middle seat). The woman convinced the person across the aisle to switch again with her so as to sit with her relatives. Young man now throws a tantrum and switches everyone back to their original seats.

I was having a chat with a professor of mine about this generation and this kind of experience seems to be more common than not.

Anonymous said...

@Madhat: The young man gave up his aisle seat to help the old lady. He was not prepared to lose his seat to the non-old person who finally took it. Plus the old lady had rented (currency: good will) the seat from the young man and obviously did not get sublet rights. But I agree, he should not have thrown a tantrum!!

@DD: Cold even if when you close the window AND draw the shades. That's why you should expect the cold shoulder from window seat passengers.

Suresh said...


I am with Anonymous above. It is not at all clear that the anecdote shows "this generation" in a bad light, as you seem to think. After all, the young man did agree to change seats.

The young man's behaviour is perfectly understandable. He prefers to give up his aisle seat and take up a window seat in favour of an old lady. But if the occupant of his original aisle seat is to be another guy [after the second swap], then he longer wants to occupy the window seat. He wants his original seat back. Admittedly, throwing a tantrum may be extreme, but I confess I too would have been very annoyed at the old lady's behaviour.

Before jumping to conclusions about "this generation", let us not forget that "that generation" also had/has plenty of badly behaved characters. The old lady, I am afraid, is one of them. If her actual objective was to move across the aisle, then she should have made that clear prior to the swap.

Anonymous said...

I that is the worst of "This Generation"'s crimes, I am quite optimistic about the future.