Coming back from presenting at our conferece, which I will blog about later, Becka and I are just about the last people to get on the plane. We get to our seats, and Becka goes to put her carry-on in the overhead compartment. Now, she’s being a little silly at this point, as only she can, and she looks at me and says she doesn’t think she can get her suitcase into the compartment. I look at her surprised, because she’s pretty strong and I know she’s perfectly capable of getting her bag into the overhead compartment. She’s just a little giggly, so focusing enough to put the suitcase in the compartment is a little difficult. In the meantime, there is a steward standing directly behind her, who says nothing, but watches this exchange. I ask if she needs help as she struggles to use her face to finally push the suitcase into the compartment. My hands are full, but I’m now looking to put things down to help her out. Though she’s managed to get the suitcase up into the compartment, her packing job wasn’t all that stellar, so the suitcase keeps getting stuck. As she struggles to push and shove, the steward is still just watching. I ask again: “Do you need help?” as I stare at the steward behind her who FINALLY manages to reach over and push the bag in. I’m a little annoyed at this man at this point. I suppose whether or not he’s supposed to help passengers with their carry-on luggage is debatable, but I guess I just sort of expect people, not even just men but people, to help other people out when they see a need.
But it doesn’t end here. Once this is finished and Becka sits down, I’m concerned because we have now just held up the last few people who are trying to get on the plane. There is a compartment above the steward’s head that is completely empty. I ask if it’s ok for me to put my bag up there. He doesn’t say anything, but simply moves. I grab my bag, throw it in, and proceed to quickly turn around to get into my seat and out of the way. As I’m turning, I hear “Is it possible to make another bag that size fit in there?” I’m caught off-guard for a moment and process this statement. I look over, and the steward is glowering at me. Finally I get it, reach over past his head back up to the compartment and turn my bag sideways so that another bag could fit in next to it. Then I hear this: “There you go.” Really? That’s just rude. I don’t want to get ugly, so I just sit down as I listen to him give equally rude comments to another lady a few rows down putting her bag away.
I understand that we want to be the most organized and take advantage of all the space possible on the plane, but I’m thinking he could have 1) been nicer in his request, 2) said something when he saw me put it up there in the first place rather than waiting, or 3) just reached up and turned my bag all on his own as it was immediately in his reach and clearly didn’t even weigh 20 pounds. I think that might even be part of his job. I’m just saying.
When the flight was over and we get up to retrieve our bags, the man sitting in front of Becka promptly grabbed her bag and handed it to her. Thank you chivalry and polite people.