You know when you are on an airplane for long enough that you just feel DONE?
Done with travel.
Done with hauling luggage all across planet earth.
Done with airplane food.
Done with timezones.
Done with the person sitting behind you.
Done with all of it.
Especially your clothes.
Yep – you have been wearing the same sweaty, wrinkled, smelly, outfit for the past 14 hours and you don’t give a sh*t anymore.
So, obviously, you go into the airplane lavatory and immediately whip off your underwear.
Then, because you are an active member of human society, you fold up your underwear neatly and wrap it carefully in paper towels to hide what you’ve done from your fellow seatmates.
After that, you are free to move onto all the other weird stuff you need to get done.
You wash your face, comb your hair, brush your teeth, try spritzing on that horrible “aroma mist” that is supplied, and find out that you forgot to pack your pills in your carry on toiletries bag.
After all that, you arrange yourself as presentable and modestly scurry back to your seat.
Sure, 15 minutes later you jump up with a start because you realize you left your carefully wrapped underwear sitting on the counter in the lavatory. But then you slowly settle back down.
You don’t want to look like a weirdo who goes back into the bathroom right away. Plus, you’re in the last row. You’d have to walk past everyone and feel the scathing judgment of all 4 flight attendants. That underwear isn’t like top tier or anything. Sure, it’s a pineapple print, but you’re so tired and you truly don’t want to see any item of the clothes you’re wearing ever again.
The black and white dress with the torn sash, the purple flats that rub your left baby toe, and those stupid pineapple print panties that could easily be considered “grannie panties”.
So you brush it out of your mind, they’re gone.
Dead to you.
Good, one less thing to carry back to N. America. One less thing to wash once you get back home. One less thing to fold and put away. One less “grannie pantie” secret shame.
Life charges forward, and you along with it.
So why did you even bother in the first place?
What is this need to dress “appropriately” when traveling via the airport?
Because your mama taught you to always wear clean underwear in case you were ever in a car accident. But in an airport?
Well, let me tell you.
In N. America, when you get patted down, it’s with a gloved back of hand lightly passing over you. Frequently accompanied by mumbled apologies from the officer. But in Indonesia, they will just straight up grab you and run their fingers right up your butt crack, pushed up close enough to feel the sweat.
That’s why. Underwear in that situation is as welcomed as water in the desert. I’ve never been so happy as to have that thin strip of extra fabric between me and that stranger’s probing finger.
But the security check was long over, and yet I had almost an entire day on a plane to endure. So long, panties!
Or so I thought.
Moments later, an overly dedicated flight attendant was barreling swiftly down the aisle. Stopping at each seat, demanding an answer to a question.
What was she asking? What could the issue be?
As the very last person in the last row, I was the last to find out.
It all became clear when she shoved the pineapple panties in my face and asked if they were mine.
Of course, they were mine. I was the only person to have used the lavatory so far on the flight.
I knew they were mine.
She knew they were mine.
And now every passenger in first and business class knew they were mine as well.
I snatched up my (no longer) secret shame and jammed them deep down into the cushions of my seat. My heart pounded, my face warmed with heat from my embarrassed blush, and my seatmate looked positively baffled.
The next seventeen hours were going to be interesting.
Or so I thought.
Little did I know 10 hours from that moment, my naked boob would fall out of my top of the whole plane to see.
I really need to start focusing more on my wardrobe choices.
So, did I bring them all the way back and dutifully wash them, fold them, and return them to the back of my drawer?
Or did I forget them jammed down between the cushions of my seat?
Well, that’s for me to know.
And you to…. never know.