Most of you probably do not know this, but I have a fairly extreme fear of heights. This has made flying on an airplane quite difficult, and with my love of traveling, has required a prescription of sorts that allows my brain to no longer care that I am trapped in a giant metal bin, propelling through the atmosphere, and by the grace of God, or physics, kept suspended in the air by wind.
Lest we forget, both of my parents worked for several years in the airline industry, and, AND, my Dad was in the Air Force.
<massive eye roll at my DNA>
In any case, my fear of heights spans more than just air travel, I have had difficulty adjusting to a variety of situations and circumstances that leave me miles (OK fine, yards) above terra firma. Much of these incidents have involved shoving, nay, carefully maneuvering around senior citizens.
For example, when Rob and I were in Seattle some years back, we were invited to join a group of friends for dinner at Sky City on the top of the tourist mecca, the Space Needle. I am actually not one for views of cities atop man-made structures. Don’t ask, cause I don’t know why. I do however love a good landscape, atop a mountain, a hill, or a rock of some sort. But I’m none too trusting of structures that are built by companies and workers chosen by land developers because they were the lowest bid. Meaning, instead of using the seven inch screws to secure beams, they use the three inch instead, because they were on sale. Good to know.
So there we were, with all of our friends, waiting for the elevator to get to the top of the Space Needle. We all walked in, quite a large group of some 15 people with an elevator operator who acted as a tour guide to explain the history of the structure and how important it has been to the skyline of Seattle. No sooner did I step in the elevator, did I then realize that it was made of glass. And I was leaning on the back wall. Not a problem I thought, I’ll simply shove my face into my then-boyfriend-now-shackled-and-chained-soul mate, and sing my happy song, teleporting myself to my happy place (in case you were wondering, it’s the delta blues and Honolua Bay on a rainy day).
Once docked a mile above the ground, the doors gloriously opened and it was time to disembark the glass death trap. Unfortunately, the little old lady standing between me and freedom, was being so very polite and letting everyone else off the elevator before her. In a wave of panic I lightly shoved her on her back with an unctuous “MOVE” and jumped (literally) over the threshold and onto the solid structure. I did turn around to the little old lady and say, “I’m sorry, I hope I didn’t hurt you. I’m afraid of heights, I hope you understand.”
I'm lying, I didn’t say that. I didn’t apologize at all…in fact, I mumbled under my breath, idiot…
I did enjoy our dinner at the top, and when it was time to board the glass death trap, I retraced my steps and safely made it to the concrete jungle of Seattle where I kissed the ground upon arrival.
Stay tuned for part deux - La Petite Femme Sur la Tour Eiffle Finale