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The Berlin Perspective: ‘Hey! Close the Window Before Takeoff!’

Flying in times of Corona is neither fun nor healthy. The sooner we are back on the ground, the better. Getting out of the airport ASAP is recommended too. So is closing the cockpit window.

Berlin, September 27th, 2021 (The Berlin Spectator) — A Boeing 737-800 is not a pickup truck. Hey! Close the window before takeoff! At 900 kilometers per hour, the pilot would lose his hairpiece rather quickly otherwise. On the other hand, the airflow would get rid of all Corona-infested aerosols in milliseconds. Obviously, there are advantages to everything, right?

Speed of Sound

Trying to avoid flying is a good idea these days. Nobody really wants to sit in an oversized metal pipe with wings which races through the sky, almost at the speed of sound, while 200 poor bastards share the breathing air up there for hours. Oh, they filter it? Sure. This aspect was pretty bad before Corona hit. By now, things are much worse, especially when neither COVID-19 vaccination certificates nor Corona test results are being checked, or when this depends on the kind of passport people hold.

Airlines, including Ryanair, are using their diligent workhorses again, in spite of Corona. Photo: Imanuel Marcus

If flying is the only option, it is good to forget you are up there, sandwiched between other passengers. A good book will do the job, at least temporarily, until you notice your neighbor on the left does not seem to be wanting to put her mask back on after taking 40 minutes to consume a tiny orange juice. Cheers.

Chicken or Pasta

What happened to those days when flying was a pleasure? Where is all the excitement? And what about those warm meals they gave everyone? “Do you want chicken or pasta?” the PanAm or Lufthansa stewardesses used to ask us, back then, when the world was still in order. The way they do it today makes passengers feel they are riding on a bus. What has the world come to?

A good book will let us forget we are in a flying metal pipe with 200 other poor bastards. Photo: Imanuel Marcus

Things are even more unpleasant at the airport, where many of the passengers who were waiting for flights to Sofia and back to Berlin seemed to believe covering their chin with their masks would make a difference. In the terminal, nobody seemed to give a damn. On the plane, people were forced to wear those masks properly, thanks to Ryanair’s crew members. They should be awarded for their persistence.

BER Airport is a romantic place at night. Photo: Imanuel Marcus

Lack of Signs

Yes, flying in times of Corona is a pain in the neck. The best part was to be taken back to Berlin’s brand new BER Airport, where it took 24 minutes to get from the passport control to the right gate, and where finding your way is a mission impossible due to a lack of signs. But an arrival back at BER at night is priceless. This place can look so romantic!