It starts with mild tremors. Tiny droplets of sweat start beading up on your upper lip and hairline, despite directing the little vent of air conditioning overhead right at your face. The fidgety people nearby struggling with belts and chattering away on mobile phones don’t help either. If anything, they emphasise the feeling of doom. Why must she say goodbye to her honey so many times? Then it slowly starts moving. You tell yourself everything will be okay. You chant to yourself that everything will be just fine. As it starts picking up speed, you forget the mantra. By now you are in the thick of anxiety. Your stomach is doing somersaults, your cheeks are flushed, the tip of your ears are burning and your palpitations are so loud, you worry the man next to you can hear them too.
By the time you are airborne, the ears are blocked and you resign yourself to a good couple of hours of aerophobia. The irrational fear of flying is quite a common phobia among both sexes and people of all ages. When I was younger, I would bring out my stuffed toy and hug it. I am not so sure if doing that at this age will go down too well with the other passengers but many times I find myself wishing I could bring my dear Coco, my pet terrier on a flight with me. Coco always knows when I am low and she has this inimitable way of looking at me that makes me feel good in an instant. With her along, travelling wouldn’t be as horrid as it is now.
Seems like my prayers have been answered!
According to the new rules of the department of transportation, air travellers in Britain will soon be allowed to bring their pets on flights if the owners use them for ‘emotional support.’ But how would an official know what purpose the animals are serving and on what grounds do they allow some and restrict others? It has been learnt that the employees will have guidelines to handle such situations. They will have to enquire about how those animals aid the passengers and what training have they had.
I have been dancing since I read this. So the next time I fly, I will probably not look like someone in the middle of a cardiac arrest.