Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Hobart Airport

I told everyone I knew today Lindsay Lohan was a lesbian - no one was really interested. I probably need some new friends.

I'm different to a lot of people (and not just because I run a one man Leilani Kai fanclub) in that I really like hanging out in airports. I don't have any rhyme or reason for this, but I don't mind sitting sipping a nice coffee or reading a magazine specially imported from the UK two months before the regular edition comes out. I like watching couples split up and get back together. I like the sense of adventure that comes from watching people fly off, and above all, I really like Internet machines that charge a dollar for 10 minutes and then block every single website that mentions the word "darn" just in case a child looks at it. The ones in Scotland sometimes make a beeping noise when they block websites - you can't even look at a Vanessa Williams clip on Youtube without alerting the entire airport that you are some kind of sick pervert. Jordin Sparks, oddly, seems to be OK. My favourite airport in the entire world is Amsterdam, because it's a big straight line, and because it's positively filthy with a lot of dodgy looking men trying to sneak a look at porn. Ah, class.

Anyway, if you want to come to Hobart, or for that matter leave Hobart, you have to lob at Hobart Airport, on either a Jetstar or Virgin Blue plane. For some reason they got rid of my favourite thing in the airport, the big truck with all the luggage that parked in the middle of a warehouse and let everyone fight to get their bags. If you take a Jetstar into Hobart, you will land roughly on time on a very cheap plane after a ten minute delay that no one can figure out. If you land on a Virgin Blue plane, you'll probably be twenty minutes late, but convince yourself you had a much better flight because the plane is a bit nicer. We've come a fair way from the glory of Kendall Airlines, the only airline in the world where doing a complete 180 in mid air was considered a smooth ride. No one I know remembers Kendall Airlines down here, but I think we've all tried to shut out the horrors of Kendalls idea of what "turbulence" constituted. Once when I flew out of Burnie to go to Melbourne, I had to get on a Spitfire type military plane due to a pilots strike, with a big landscape painting bolted across as a "door" and a for once taken really seriously lecture on what to do in case we hit a mountain - so I really should stop whinging about Jetstar, now I think about it.

Hobart Airport isn't going to win any classic design awards and most people seem to hate the place. However what I do love about Hobart Airport is the fact that there really is no upper class to the joint - like I said, you either land Jetstar or Virgin Blue, and you'll be in economy, and you'll walk across the tarmac and wait for your bags and look at the world WILKOMMEN in the twinkling lights like the rest of us - so it doesn't matter if you are a celebrity, a faux celebrity or have just won the lottery. You are in that crappy lounge watching the Today show on TV with the rest of us. Cricket teams? On a Jetstar. Football teams? Guess what the choice is? That Australian band I was on the plane with when I thought we were going to crash in the Tasman and wondered if it was worth dying if it meant I took them with me? Get on the Jetstar and stop your rock like posturing. My favourite moment like this wasn't our state Premier Paul Lennon hiding in a coffee shop so disgruntled voters wouldn't hassle him, it was all around dickhead TV, celebrity Carlton cheer squad member and radio football commentator Tim "Timmy" Lane sitting a row in front of me trying to read a book while two drunk Carlton supporters sitting next to him tried to discuss Tasmanias bid for an AFL team and whether Eddie Betts was better than Sean Charles. Every part of his face was screaming for help and the comfort of business class. Oh, that'll teach you Timmy to hate Collingwood so much...

The final reason I think everyone should spend a day at Hobart Airport is this - no one has ever, ever landed in anything other than terrible weater. I'm not sure why this is, but I promise every single time you touch down in Hobart and get off the plane, it's absolutely freezing. Even if the sun is shining, even if they tell you on the plane it's 38 degrees in Hobart, I promise you you land in rain and cold weather every single time. Adam Hills got ten minutes out of that during a stand up show. There must be a scientific explanation for it. It's like a lot of odd things about Hobart - the strange obsession of our nightclubs with Dave Dobbyn, the way the crappier a radio show is, the longer it stays on the air, the fact that we never, ever make anything out of Errol Flynn or Taz to try and promote the state, but hope Ricky Ponting will do the job, and the way that the coffee in the shops at the airport, unlike anywhere in the centre of the city, actually, crazily, tastes like coffee. Something Starbucks should probably try one day.

Ooh, an anti Starbucks reference, how very "The Age"...

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