Honeymoon in Jamaica Part 1. The Plane ride from hell.
“I can’t get on this plane,” I told Poptart. I could hardly breathe and I felt as though my heart was going to pound through my chest.
“Stacy, you have to. We have 10 days booked at the Royal Plantation in Ocho Rios,” he told me trying to be as sympathetic as he possibly could. My head was feeling like it was stuffed full of cotton and like someone was squeezing the base of my skull with a vice grip. My lips had already gone numb and the numbness was working its way down my arms and legs. I wasn’t sure what had been happening to me for the last month but I knew that whatever was happening was seriously putting my honeymoon in Jamaica in jeopardy.
“Hit me,” it told him.
“What?” he said looking at me like I was completely crazed.
“Punch me. If you love me you’ll punch me in the face.”
“Stacy, you’ve lost your mind. I’m not going to hit you.”
“Then I’m not getting on this plane.”
“Stacy, once you get on the plane you’ll feel better I promise,” he assured me. I didn’t believe him. There I was, about to embark on a wonderful adventure with the man I loved and had just married, and I was having a full blown panic attack and was petrified to get on the plane. I was only in the line to check in our bags. I still needed to get through security, wait for the plane, board the plane and then sit on the damn plane for the next 5 hours and 45 minutes. There was no way I was going to make it.
Something had happened in my brain about a month before the wedding and I was still trying to process it all. Something bad. I had been driving to work and I couldn’t breathe and I started getting dizzy and my lips and limbs went numb. That was the first of many panic attacks to follow. I hadn’t seen anyone for them yet because I thought they were happening because I had just recently lost my mother to cancer. I was also getting married and we were up rooting from LA to San Diego. There was a lot going on and I chalked it up to sensory overload. But now I was having one on what was supposed to be one of the happiest moments of my life and I was seriously concerned our 10 days in Ocho Rios was about to become a “what if” moment.
As I stood in the check in line I didn’t know what to do so I grabbed my purse and dug inside and pulled out some Tylenol PM. Fuck it. I thought to myself. What can it hurt? I pried open the bottle while Poptart looked at me with big eyes.
“Are you sure that’s a good idea?”
“Do you have a better one?”
“You’re right. Take two.” So I took two. They didn’t kick in until we were boarding but I had officially made it onto the plane, now all Poptart had to do was get me to my seat and we should be fine. As we sat down in our assigned seats I was a little woozy but I was starting to finally be able to get some air. I took a couple of deep breaths and went to put my seat belt on when all of a sudden I felt something odd about the cushion I was sitting on. It didn’t feel stable somehow. I lifted my butt up off the seat and that’s when I realized the top part of the seat, not just the cushion wasn’t bolted into the rest of the plane.
“Oh good. I feel so safe now,” I told Poptart.
“Maybe if we tell them we’re honeymooning they’ll upgrade us to first class,” Poptart said. His idea would have been a brilliant one if we hadn’t looked around and noticed that each and everyone other person on the plane happen to be honeymooning as well.
“I don’t think that’s going to work,” I told him.
“Well then lets scoot over one seat and just hope no one else sits in our row.’ So Poptart and I both moved one seat to our left and leave the aisle seat of death open for some other sucker.
As the plane filled up we were happy to find out that no one else was going to be seated in our aisle. This flight was going to be just like Noah’s Ark and we were all going to be separated in groups of two. “Stacy, when we get in the air why don’t you lay down in my lap and try and get some sleep,” Poptart said to me. Can you see why I married him? Seven years later and he’s still like that.
The plane began to lift off and I’m going to be completely honest when I say that I kind of wish that we had gone with the panic attack thing and kept our asses on the ground. Jamaica Airlines planes must be held together with scotch tape, bubble gum, and the dreams of small children because this plane was shaking and I swear to you it sounded like there were holes in the plane where air was rushing in. Air. From the outside.
“I think we’re going to die,” I told Poptart.
“This is not good,” he responded as we looked at each other. The plane started creaking louder the higher we got and I summoned the courage to pull my eyes off the back of the seat in front of me to look at the other passengers to see if they were half as scared as we were. Maybe we’re just overreacting. Maybe it’s not that bad. But as I looked around at all the other Honeymooners, I saw them saying silent prayers to their personal saviors. Holy shit. We are going to die on this plane and I didn’t even leave a will. Who will my cats go to? What if they find my body and want to bury me! I don’t want to be buried. I want to be cremated. But I had never told anybody that!
“If I die I don’t want to be buried. I want to be cremated and half my ashes spread in the ocean off the coast of San Diego and the other half spread in the mountains of Big Bear,” I told Poptart.
“Why are you telling me this?” he asked me looking horrified.
“Just in case we die on this plane.”
“Then telling me is not going to help you is it?”
“Please stop talking like that. We’re not going to die.”
“If you say so.” We are so going to die.
Just then a crazy woman that Jamaican Airlines called a flight attendant came down the isle offering champagne. “Would you like some complementary champagne?” Shit lady I hope you’ve got a LOT back there because I intend to get drunk. I don’t know if you know this but we are going to DIE! DIE! DIE!
“Why yes, I would love some,” I told her. 4 Tylenol PM and three glasses of Champagne later, my panic stricken ass was finally asleep in Poptart’s lap and he was able to get some peace and quiet enough to fall asleep himself.
I woke up when the plane was “landing” if that’s what you want to call it. Oh thank you God. We’re alive! “Yea babe we made it to Jamaica!” I told Poptart
“We’re at a smaller airport and now we have to board another plane to get to the main airport in Kingston.” WTF? Is he kidding me? I have to get on another death trap now? So we made our way into a small building that only resembled an “airport” because it had a bunch of planes flying around it. There was only one terminal and it seemed as if everyone who was coming in or out of “location unknown” was now all trapped in this one tiny area. And this is when the fun started. We had all come from a very large plane and were now told we were going to be taking much smaller planes to Kingston. Okay, fine, no problem. Or so you would think. What they didn’t tell us was that we were going to have to have Amazing Race type battles to vie for spaces on the plane. So Poptart and I were standing very close to the front of the counter when we were informed that first to check in are also going to be the first to depart. Now we had been flying all night and it was now morning and everyone that was on the plane of death was tired and ready to get to their destination. So otherwise happy, sweet couples suddenly turned into dangerous, catty, villains that would sooner sell their own grandmothers down the river than give up their seats on the next plane out of “location unknown.”
Poptart and I got run over. It was as simple as that. I blame the Tylenol PM and the champagne for my poor reaction time. Poptart, well he’s just a nice guy and there’s nothing wrong with that. After a lifetime of dating assholes I’m happy to have him on my team. But considering we got pushed from the front of the line and missed the first plane it was time for Tylenol PM Stacy to leave the building and psycho Stacy to take over. Plane number two was now up for grabs and sure enough the pushing started. I took all 5’10 of me and pushed my way back up to the front of the pecking order where Darwin intended me to be. You tiny bitches can just shove off! I slammed our passports down on the ticket counter and said loud and proud “Poptart. Party of two!” After I took our tickets from the man at the counter the hubby and I tried to procure some food but this “airport” was so sad it didn’t even have anything to eat except for some mixed nuts. Don’t think I didn’t eat my weight in nuts. Where they were lacking in the food department they more than made up for it in the booze department. Not only did they have a duty free shop that alcoholics round the world dreamt of, but they also had a full bar and it was time for the Poptart party of two to replenish their blood alcohol levels before their livers jumped out of their bodies in revolt.
We made the small flight into Kingston and exited the plane and were told that we could either grab an even smaller plane to Ocho Rios or take the vans provided by the hotel. We opted for the van. As we headed for the van area I heard what I swore was God speaking to me. “Do you want to buy some pot?” God? Is that you? I looked behind me and there was Jamaican man wearing a shirt with holes in it and he was missing most of his teeth.
“Do you want to buy some pot?” he said again. Wow God. You’ve really let yourself go. Even though EVERYBODY we had talked to told me not to buy pot at the airport, I did. It was possibly the dirtiest weed I had ever seen in my life but how could I know what the future had in store for me?
I took my bag of shit weed and the love of my life and what’s even more surprising, somehow our luggage made it to Kingston and went to the area to wait for the vans. Because a van ride has got to be better than another plane ride right? Right?
To be continued…
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