Monday, 12 February 2007

Another journey

The flight was delayed. As I passed through yet another security control, showing yet again all my flight documents and passport, I remembered when I was travelling as a child, two nuns boarded the plane in front of me. They showed their boarding passes to the flight attendant who, fortunately, noticed that they were boarding the wrong plane. Surely that couldn’t happen these days.

Coincidentally there was a nun on my flight yesterday. She was one of the last to go through the gate and as the flight was pretty much full, she and her companion were left standing. It was interesting in two ways. First, I haven’t seen a nun out and about for I don’t know how long, and secondly if that had been in the Ireland of my youth, dozens of people would have leaped to their feet to offer her a seat.

I was left contemplating whether there are fewer nuns about even in largely Catholic countries (I think the answer is probably yes), and also whether they are even there less respected than they were (no doubt the same answer).

Well, such lofty deliberations kept my mind off the fact that he was pulled over for speeding on the way back from collecting me from the airport. And I didn’t once say “I told you so”, though my tongue is now red raw. The most charming gendarme helped ease the pain too.

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