I fly a lot. In fact, I probably have spent more time in the air, then on the ground.
Today, we were flying from Nice to London on British Airways. The aircraft, a Boeing 767, was full. There were several people on the flight we knew. We were coming from Monaco after attending the Monte Carlo TV Festival, where my wife’s movie, “Back Door Channels: The Price of Peace” had its World Premiere.
The seating configuration was 2 on the left, 2 in the middle and 2 on the right side. We were in the middle section of row 1.
A senior broadcast executive and his wife, a well-known American actress, were to our right. We got to know them during the few days in Monte Carlo at the various receptions hosted by the State Minister (Prime Minister) and H.S.H. Prince Albert, and other fuctions. The executive currently works for a major broadcast network. His chairman, who founded the network, was someone I worked for a few years ago, and a great guy.
Now back to our story.
As we were awaiting for the doors to close, and to hear those witty comments coming from the flight deck – the British welcoming greetings, details of our 80 minute journey and the weather are always a hit on British flights.
Suddenly, a member of the ground crew walked over and told our friends, “Sorry (the Brits always start with that word), your seats have been moved.” Our friends looked up and stared. They asked why. There was silence. They just HAD to move.
So, our friends moved from the first row to the fourth row. In the scheme of things, not horrible. But, it was the manner in which the BA staffer insisted. Then, a man in his mid-40s man, and a woman, with a straw hat, dark glasses , and who appeared to be much older arrived.
It turns out that actress Joan Collins (aged 76) and her fifth husband, Percy Gibson, (according to “Wikipedia”, he’s 44), took over the seats.
We were told later by a BA stewardess that the former “Dynasty” star and her husband put up a fight at the gate insisting that they sit in the first row. The stewardess said they fly often and they’re very particular. My wife told her that the executive and his wife are well-known. In fact, the actress has starred in two major series on U.S. television, both with wide distribution worldwide. Ironically one of the series is finishing its 7-year run and another one is in its second year.
My point is that BA had no right to abruptly move people just to accommodate Joan Collins and her husband. But, this is how BA treat passengers, who are not in their class of elite. Not my “favourite” airline anymore.