This is a continuation of the Cuba series – they will be making sporadic appearances over the next few weeks.
If it wasn’t for 1dad1kid we would have come to the Cuban airport completely unprepared for what we were getting ourselves into. I’m not talking about the plush, chic interiors of Virgin Airlines… Cuba isn’t exactly synonymous with glamour.
The parking lot in Cancun is a zoo (with cars fighting with huge ADO buses). It makes me miss the easy parking of Heathrow Airport Parking and Gatwick Airport Parking. I felt incredibly lucky to be in a massive tour bus instead of the small cars dodging kamikaze like ADO buses.
We were bussed to the airplane, incredibly excited about our impending trip. As we looked out of the window, there she was, a 1970s refurbished Soviet airplane in all her glory. Sleek and freshly painted, a set of stairs pushed to the door made it look like we were important ambassadors heading out on some important spy mission.
It wasn’t until you get into the plane that you realize that the outside was a wolf in sheep’s clothing.
The exit signs and safety brochures were in Russian and English. The seats had ash trays. The overhead bins were made of metal. All seats and trays could not be in their upright and locked positions.
You could feel the vintage-ness coming out in full force.
While I should have taken the previous signs as warnings, I was completely taken aback by the next hour that was our flight.
As the plane started it’s shaky take off, the air conditioning came out in full force.
It looked like we were getting gassed.
The humid, wet, cold air clouds came pouring out of not only the air spouts, but the side of the roof near the window seat, and in the middle row.
This is when I realized there were crystallized ice droplets frozen to the ceiling.
As I looked out into the horizon of the Caribbean, I realized that is is probably in my best interest to actually READ the brochures about water landings. I’m not sure the life preservers would actually float after all this time.
There is one thing I hate the most when flying: The landings.
Our shaky turbulent plane made its way to the runway and my knuckles turned white while grabbing not only Shaun but the armrest, nearly knocking out the ashtray.
The captain somehow landed the plane and the entire cabin burst into cheers and applause.
Do you know how terrifying it is to have the passengers clap like it is some feat that we are alive? I have NEVER been in a cabin where this has occurred. I just assumed that the plane SHOULD land, no applause needed.
In Soviet Russia, the plane rides you.
Have you ever experienced a flight like this one?