Sunday 6 April 2008

Another dreadful in-flight toddler

Crying from heights

What have I, what have I, what have I done to deserve to deserve this? (Lyrics)

Second time already, I get on the plane with a well-heeled family that takes a row or two of premium priced seats only for me to suffer the squealing, bawling and crying of some distressed toddler.

On the way to Berlin a few weeks ago, I suspected the parents needed more than just a manual on child succouring and then I realised the child might have been seriously distressed because of the pressurisation of cabins when at cruising height.

Some smarter parents advised the child be given a dummy, the sucking action might then equalise the pressure in the inner ear and hence pacify the baby enough to make it quiet.

Methinks the cabin crew should have additional instructions on how to manage babies and toddlers.

Once again

I could not believe my luck again with my short trip to Manchester when the baby was strapped into a FAA-certified baby seat behind me such that I could not recline and the 15 minutes into the flight, the banshee was let loose and could not be contained.

My ears were assaulted with the cacophony much as my back bore the brunt of a restless toddler kicking out at the back of my seat.

Not having kids of my own and having paid rip-off prices for what is just a jumped up Economy Class seat masquerading as Business Class – that is what you get with AirFrance-KLM I was within my rights either to remonstrate to the parents or the air steward to sort this nonsense out.

We endured about 30 minutes of this noise till the toddler grew too tired that it could hardly whimper and it fell asleep.

Just cooler than freezing

Just as I wondered how I’m gonna get through we approached Manchester all the hills from West Yorkshire white-out with snow and frost – I could have been North of the Arctic Circle as the captain told us the good news that the temperature was no more -2 Celsius but now a higher -1 Celcius – and it is April – makes you wonder about global warming.

Next time I get on a plane, I would be as ready as a Pet Shop Boy – a muzzle to shut the runts up or better still a good horse tranquiliser to keep the whole family comatose for the whole flight.

What have I done to deserve this?

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