Friday, 1 May 2015

Comfort for the Long Haul

Being the spring in Canada, I should not be surprised to see hooded sweatshirts and blue jeans, along with some sort of clunky sandal as the traveling uniform for both male and female bodies in the Calgary airport. Changing location to the Chinook Lounge did not produce much of an improvement. 

After the eight hour flight to Amsterdam and a two hour reprieve in the Lounge at D25 the attire significantly improved. The generalization that Europeans tend to dress better than North Americans is once again evident, irrespective of whether you are milling about the public areas of an airport or in the private lounges.

It seems that the North American obsession with comfort renders us incapable of dressing smartly. Yet when clothing fits well, whether it be a blazer or a hoodie, it should feel comfortable. I have concluded that for the most part, the reason people feel uncomfortable in a blazer is that it simply doesn't fit. We tend to have "good" wear and "comfortable" wear. Because we wear the good stuff less often, we end up wearing certain pieces that we have outgrown. Even a cotton hooded sweatshirt will be uncomfortable if it does not fit well. We buy these items more often and so the fit will always be better. The point is definitely moot.

If I sound judgemental, I apologize. Don't get me wrong, you should feel comfortable on an eight hour flight so do what it takes.

NICE: I often take a "pyjama" outfit with me - a t-shirt and drawstring linen pants/yoga pants/cotton sweats or some such combination and change for part of the long haul. Psychologically you feel as if you have had a night's sleep even if it was only three or four hours or interrupted. For those who say they can't be bothered, there isn't that much to do but sit so why not trick yourself into believing you will have a restful voyage and wake up refreshed.

NECESSARY: An eye mask, ear plugs and socks. Even though I believe my cashmere shawl is a necessity and I had it with me, I didn't use it this time. The airplane temperature was comfortable and I found the airline blanket adequate.

NO THANKS: Anything tight or stiff that feels like it is sticking to you so no thanks to skinny jeans and synthetics in flight.

Bon voyage!

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