Last week, I flew non-stop from Atlanta to Korea to entertain the troops. The flight itself was 15 hours, so I spent close to 16 hours on the plane. It’s the longest flight I’ve ever been on. It was the best worst flight ever.
The night before my flight, I found myself at a local urgent care. To keep this article out of the “too much information” category, I wasn’t feeling well and didn’t want to not feel well at 38,000 feet for any period of time, much less 15 hours. Fortunately, I felt much better later that night after taking the prescribed medication.
The next morning, I felt like a million bucks. I felt great. Apparently the meds and the recommended BRAT diet consisting of Bananas, Rice, Applesauce, and Toast worked. Normally, my BRAT diet is more like Beer, Ribs, And Tacos.
I was wearing my Auburn attire when I went to check in at the airport. “Roll Tide,” yelled the lady from behind the counter.
From there, my day only got worse as the nausea resurfaced. I felt that I needed something light in my stomach, so I ordered a bowl of wonton soup. As I sat down to eat, the nausea intensified. Moreover, the soup was too hot to eat, so I put it back in the bag and went to my gate.
By now, I was feeling miserable and was on the verge on leaving the airport. To make matters worse, I was assigned a middle seat. I blame that on the Bama fan. The thought of sitting in a middle seat and being sick for 15 hours almost made me leave the airport, even after boarding the plane.
I nodded and smiled as a sweet little Korean lady sat next me. After telling me that she didn’t speak English, I patted her on the arm and smiled. Secretly, I was ecstatic to hear this. I was miserable and didn’t feel like talking to anyone.
Not too long into the flight, I broke out my soup. Two minutes later, the flight attendant walked by and told me I was not allowed to have my own food in the cabin.
That was another bummer. Lunch was served shortly thereafter. It was good and even came with a serving of rice. The only problem is that I was in the middle seat and looked like a Tyrannosaurus rex trying to eat without elbowing my neighbors.
Shortly before landing, I began to feel better, although I got very little sleep. The flight was smooth and uneventful. My stomach was grateful. The passengers were incredibly quiet and cordial, while the crew was very nice and helpful. The window seat was occupied by a man that didn’t get out of his seat one time for the duration of the trip. I just don’t know how he did it. I got up a half dozen times. The old lady was really sweet. We patted each other on the arm and smiled often. This was a universal language of love and respect in my mind.
Once I arrived in Korea, I was fine, albeit tired. The old lady even gave me a hug before we parted ways. We had our first show the next night, which was a phenomenal show in every way. It made the trials and tribulations of the trip more than worthwhile, and we have nine shows left.
Sometimes life is unpleasant, but it’s usually just temporary. Hang in there. The destination is often worth the struggle of the journey.
Jody Fuller is a comic, speaker, writer and soldier with three tours of duty in Iraq. He is also a lifetime stutterer. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. For more information, please visit www.jodyfuller.com.