I was having coffee with a friend of mine when I got the call. Deeply immersed in the big fashion issue of Vogue, I was prepared for the adventure he proposed. I didn’t know him well. He was a pilot. Had his own small plane. It was a lovely sunny day and he was “going up” and wondered if I wanted to come along. “Sure,” I said. Told my caffeinated friend. Her first question was, “What are you going to wear?”
I had the perfect outfit…so I thought. It was a combination of flow and twirl. A Michael Kors silk skirt and top. The skirt was fitted to the knee, and then flirted with a small flare. The top flowed. I was a human airplane scarf. Ready to soar. I was Faye Dunaway. Meryl Streep. I was Whitney Houston in the final scene of the BodyGuard. Cue the music! I was ready!
He pulled up to the hangar. I was underwhelmed with his baggy jeans, but still prepared to be in my own movie. We walked up to the plane. I looked for some sort of stairs. A ladder even. Anything. He was doing his pre-flight check, and told me I could get in. But could I? I replayed the movies in my head. Scarved and flowing, I saw Whitney run to the plane. But they didn’t show how she got in. How was I supposed to get in? I looked around. Trying to appear interested in the empty sky. I was really just waiting for him to get in so he wouldn’t be able to watch me crawl up the wing. He easily hoisted his long leg in his baggy jeans up on the wing and hopped in. I hoisted my skirt. What underwear was I wearing? I hadn’t thought about that. It wasn’t that kind of date. “Don’t step on the wing with those shoes,” he said. Obviously I wasn’t wearing tennis shoes with my ensemble. So I pulled myself up on the wing. Sat on my backside. Crab crawled my way in backwards. Pulled my feet in, not touching the wing. Sweating in the glaring sun, and even hotter embarrassment. I adjusted my skirt. He niner-ninered, as I sang, “I will always love you,” to myself, in my head.
I acted out the movie for my friend at Caribou Coffee the next day. It was one of our greatest laughs. My full length drama had become a latte-snorting comedy. I try to remind myself of this, during those times when I feel like I’m hoisting myself, struggling to climb the wing of the day. Everything is not as serious as it seems. I look in the morning mirror. Fling back my imaginary scarf over my shoulder, breaking into chorus, “And I, I, Iiiii, will always love you….ooooooh-ooooh!” I’m flying!