Stop me if you’ve heard this one!
An Arab, a Dutchman and an Australian walk into a bar….
Also: a Belgian Bar in Wellington, New Zealand, so the multi-cultural nature of this situation knows no bounds.
Yesterday, I was sitting in the QANTAS club, being blared on by Sky news continuing the hyperbole regarding the ADFA cadets which has now morphed into the Women on the Frontline !?!?! hoary old chestnut and aren’t we all thrilled to itty-bitty pieces about that?
The flight was paged, and this is where the Fates (Clotho, Lachesis and Atropos) must have decided to go on some kind of mad destash and use up some of that trendy 8ply Convergence. In the “You’re sooo screwed” colourway.
Because 2011 is officially the year of the Ex (and Dear 2011, if you’re saving up any kind of Amphibian encounter, you can zack off, right now) a gentleman I knew from last year until he uttered some particularly bizarre remark about wanting to pursue a friend of mine due to her more fluid orientation and what that would mean for him (not kidding…) was on the same plane.
Why doesn’t QANTAS serve champagne at breakfast?? This is Business Class… Helloooooo???
My seat mate, a nice man from the United Arab Emirates (Yes – horse talk!!!), sat down and I noted that he looked to be resenting the early morning start just as much as I was. This conversation starter would last from Canberra to Melbourne, and include his assistance when one of the Fates saw an opportunity to detach my phone, in his case, from my camera bag. Pattern instructions : Skip 2 stitches, chain 8, snaffle mobile phone, laugh maniacally.
You know that announcement that the airlines make about checking the overhead locker? Yeah – that’s good – if you can see INTO the overhead locker and don’t need any special kind of equipment to reach into the back. And someone isn’t swearing at you because you’re in Business class and they’re not and your effort to reach an overhead locker, which, let’s face it – is OVER my head, is apparently ruining just their whole day.
Anyway – my seatmate hailing from UAE, an ex – F16 pilot, and I found plenty to talk about regarding the state of the Defence force in both our countries, which followed naturally into my line of Search and Rescue. His travelling partner, relelgated further back in the aircraft, was from the Netherlands and both got to witness my “ruh-roh” moment in the Melbourne QANTAS club. Their assistance in lending me a phone to call the unhelpful Telecommunications company to put phone on hold – greatly appreciated.
Oh – yeah – 2011 – was hoping you’d forgotten me – so my phone is missing, and my seatmate’s place of work is a house in O’Malley, which used to be owned by… Thanks. You know – I really appreciate the extra effort you’re going to weave all these slubs of past experiences into the fabric of my day-to-day life but could you just quit it????
Anyway – crochet and visualise, crochet and visualise.
The pair were also on the same flight to the land of the All-Blacks, my Arab friend – after the cabin staff relocated me , once again my seat mate and he promptly fell asleep – I dared him to be asleep before the pilot called rotating, having been known to be asleep before the safety brief myself. He went to the Land of Nod, we left Australia about the same time. I worked on a new baby afghan pattern I have brewing, which, when my Seatmate returned to the land of Those who have slept in the past 24 hours, drew comment. The cabin staff also were interested in watching the work grow from the three rows I boarded with to a 15cm deep section which is where we arrived, in New Zealand.
I watched with interest the way in which Dutch and UAE passport holders were treated by NZ customs. The Dutch being responsible for colonising NZ and an Arab passport – I guess has sensitivities everywhere. I declared my bag to Biosecurity, having had both a labrador and a beagle take interest in schniffing (though didn’t indicate!) and I have three pairs of very clean shoes. We all finished up outside, and plans made for dinner.
If you want to know what restaurant you can choose that three disparate nationalities will be happy with when in a fourth country? Indian.
And to be precise – Balti Indian, which is in a hotly disputed area of the Kashmir region (so – Pakistani influences as well) and borders with Tibet (Ah.. China – there you are!) This was the same Indian I fell into last time when cold, windblown and hungry. Turned out to be rated 4stars, which pleased my companions, but the service is ordinary which is a shame because the food is outstanding.
Anyway – I have a day of talking to people who find people in New Zealand, I delivered the wool to Jess at KnitWorld’s knitty gang last night (mission accomplished – and sweetie – remember: Taxis!!! and no toads!) and I walked out without buying a ball. I did.
The postscript to the day is that QANTAS staff did find my phone, and someone was kind enough to scroll through the contacts to find “Mum” and our ever-valiant M_F, freshly exercised from having walked Fergus, retrieved my poor phone from it’s overhead captivity. I know owners of iPhones have Angry Birds to amuse them, but my Snap’s entertainment value (apart from reading old texts) runs to the popular Bubblebreaker, and not being able to mindlessly pop bubbles to fill in gaps of my day is making my thumbs prick.
Stuff on eBay is selling – frogrockr, if you’re looking!
hugs to you all!