THIS is what’s wrong with easily offended**, entitled Americans:
I’m sitting in first class. No tears for me, I know. I fly A LOT, hence the miles and the occasional upgrade. Typically I’m back in economy with the rest of the flying crowds. And that’s okay. I choose to pay for the cabin I can afford knowing what service will be afforded there—whether seat selection, snack choices and bathroom choices. That’s right. The appropriate, designated bathroom for my fare and cabin.
I would no sooner troll up 32 or 3 rows to use the First Class lavatory if I’m not actually sitting in First Class. Nor would I demand a free hot meal and glass drinking glass of bottled wine back in my economy seat. I would not expect a hot washcloth in economy. It’s economy. I’ll ask for extra almonds or cookies and enjoy my free non alcoholic beverage. Or spring for an overpriced cocktail if I’m nervous. But I use the bathroom in my cabin.
At the risk of sounding like a snob, I will also say this. If I paid for an upgrade to First Class or got lucky and got a free upgrade to First Class, I’m going to use the lav in First Class. And I expect that lav to only be used by those of us in First Class. It’s a short walk and typically no line. Because you know, you pay extra or earn by paying a lot over time, for that kind of perk.
But I’m sitting here now in First Class (the lemon grass chicken was really good and not just because I missed lunch and was starving) and watching the parade tweens, teens, adults and such march up to use the forward lav. I’m not a snob. I don’t ever want to sound like a snob. But THIS is what made me write this (at the risk of sounding like a snob): I’m in row 2. In row 1, there is an incredibly frail, elderly gentleman. I mean FRAIL. I’ve seen this before. When grown children are flying a parent home (to die) they choose to spend crazy money for First Class to offer their seriously fragile, uncomfortable loved one a smoother ride. A calmer ride. A less crowded ride. With more room. A blankie and pillow. A flight attendant with more time to help them since she has fewer passengers in her cabin.
So this fragile, elderly, hunched over man gets up out of his seat, with great struggling and assistance from his daughter next to him, and heads to the 14 inches forward to the bathroom. Except some teen girl from economy walks in front of him. Like, veers to the right to pass him, and go into the bathroom. The daughter tried to intervene but the Teen gave her a look. Honestly, it looked like the adult daughter was trying to be uber polite—unfortunately, it was at the expense of her father. The fragile, hunched over, confused desperate looking elderly man with his one hand on the wall and the other reaching for the lav door handle.
There are plenty of bathrooms in the middle and rear of this plane. Plenty. That kid should have walked the towards the rear, not the front. (Guess her parents didn’t teach her to look out for elders or others.)
The grown daughter, perhaps next time, will remember this and be all, “oh hell no little girl! My dad has dibs! And just because he’s you know, DYING and FRAGILE, but because I PAID FOR THIS. Back up!”
Okay maybe that’s a fantasy. But wouldn’t it be great? Or before all that, wouldn’t it be great if we followed common courtesies, followed easy every day “rules” and respected others?
**Because of complaints from easily offended individuals, my favorite airline is no longer allowed to make the announcement asking passengers to use the lavatory in their assigned cabin.