I spotted her in the waiting area before we boarded the flight, her telltale streak gave her away. She's sporting a new, shorter 'do (it looks great!), I pulled out my laptop to confirm it was her (Google to the rescue, again), I was satisfied just knowing that I could cross that Vegas goal off my list. I sent a text message to my brother and his wife (they were flying home on a different airline, so they were seated in another terminal), since I'm so crap at texting, I was only able to muster "arlene is on my plane" before collapsing from exhaustion (am I the only person in the world who finds texting taxing?). The thought that she could be seated next to me briefly crossed my mind, but I quickly dismissed it, I mean, what are the odds?
Turns out, the odds are very good that when you're seated in executive class, you may be seated next to someone famous! When I got to my row, and looked down at my new travel partner, I didn't flinch on the outside, but on the inside, I was going ballistic (OMGOMGOMGOMG!!!!). I casually pulled out my phone to text my brother and his wife, but since I'm so crap at texting, I gave up on that idea immediately, I didn't want to bother Arlene Dickinson with my furious pecking (seriously, I am *that* bad at texting!). I'm pretty certain the flight attendant also knew who she was, at one point, we shot each other a knowing look. I did my best to ignore Arlene Dickinson, I didn't want to bother her. In short, I tried my hardest to be the best travel partner Arlene Dickinson had ever had.
I had big plans to take advantage of the perks of travelling executive class (it's a pretty sweet gig, quite frankly), but in the interest of not disturbing my new travel partner, I politely declined the alcohol, chips, and hot breakfast that Air Canada tried to ply me with. I was on my best behaviour! At one point, my nose started to run, I went into a panic, I didn't want to waken Arlene Dickinson with my sniffles, so I willed the snot back into my head. Do you know how hard it is to will snot back up your nose, and into your sinus cavities? It's very hard! I tried my best to fall asleep, however, the buzz of sitting next to a celebrity (CBC royalty, if you will) was a powerful stimulant, and I spent approximately 3.5 hours in a constant state of giddyness.
My husband and I are serious Dragon's Den (and Shark Tank) fans, we never miss an episode. Of course, I had all these ideas in my head as to what I would say to a real life Dragon if I ever met a real life Dragon, as it turns out, what you think you might say and what you actually say are two completely different things! As we were about to begin our descent, when I was sure she was awake, I turned to Arlene Dickinson and blurted out "I can't let this flight end without telling you my husband and I are *huge* Dragon's Den fans, we love your show!". She asked me if I was in Vegas on business or pleasure, and I sheepishly replied "pleasure" because I was terrified (terrified!) to admit to her I was self-employed, and attending a tradeshow. We exchanged some friendly chit chat, I'm glad I plucked up the nerve to talk to her at the end of the flight.
Now that I've had a couple of days to reflect on my brush with celebrity, I've come to the following realizations:
- there is never a good time to eat a bunch of roasted garlic cloves (my pre-flight meal). Never!
- although it tastes really good, watermelon flavoured gum does nothing to cover up the stench of roasted garlic cloves. Nothing!
- I would probably suck at being on Dragon's Den. Unless you like awkward pauses, stilted conversation, and nervous laughter, in which case I'd be *awesome*!
- unless you meet Hannah Montana, or Selena Gomez, or some other young, bubbly Disney star, your nine year old daughter will not care. She will. Not. Care.
- it is very frustrating when you're super-excited about something, and your nine year old daughter is not. Very. Frustrating.
- nine year old daughters cannot fake excitement. They won't even try.
- if I'm ever seated next to George Clooney on a flight, I will probably explode. For all parties involved, let's hope that never happens!
I'm fairly certain my family (especially my nine year old daughter) is sick of hearing about Arlene Dickinson. With this brush with celebrity under my belt, if I'm fortunate enough to be in the same position again, I will be better-prepared. At the very least, I will have extra-strength breathmints in my purse!