The voice over the loud speaker paged every thirty seconds announcing arrivals, departures, and delays. Kathleen sat amid the turmoil surrounded by luggage laden college students in jeans and businessmen in dark suits with leather briefcases in one hand and wardrobe bags flung over the opposite shoulder in the other.
‘Why do women insist on mimicking men’s drab attire in the work place?’ she wondered. Kathleen had fallen into the ‘three piece suit’ trap as well except she always added a dash of color, either in the form of a striped scarf or colorful silk blouse. Few of her colleagues would suspect her bikini panties. A slight smile crossed her lips. She always wore red ones whenever she addressed the board, especially for those unassuming tight-asses who “admired her total professionalism.”
Kathleen shifted her body on the fake leather bench of the terminal. Usually Annette, her secretary, scheduled her flights with as little layover time as possible. And usually, Kathleen visited the executive club to return phone messages and have a complimentary vodka tonic. But this evening, nothing was usual.
The flight from Chicago had been late landing in Denver and it would be at least two hours before the runway was cleared of snow for the LA departure. Colorado often had freak spring storms. The irritation of the delay was complicated by the closure of the club because of a broken water pipe. Kathleen, was sitting with the general public, waiting.
“Oh, well,” she sighed out loud as she surveyed the crowded terminal. There was no point getting irritated.
She considered working her way to the bar but a football game on the large screen TV had drawn an enthusiastic crowd and even a drink was not worth the thick smoke and bumping elbows she would encounter.
‘So,’ Kathleen cajoled herself, ‘relax.’
Traveling for the company the last two years had eliminated all glamour from flying. To Kathleen boarding a 747 for New York was like a daily commute on the freeway for some; something she had to do to get to work. Of course, her family saw her travel as neither a burden or a sacrifice. Aunt Sadie thought she was a stewardess. “After all, why else would Kathy fly so much?”
‘Oh, Aunt Sadie.’