My first airplane ride was when I was nine-years-old. My mom brought the three of us kids special travel outfits, and while I don't recall specifics, I do remember shiny white patent leather shoes. The stewardesses were exotic, the food was delicious, and the whole experience was glamorous. We visited the cockpit, and wore our tin pilot wings proudly back to our seats.
Today, sadly, air travel has become an awful, dignity-sucking ordeal as we are forced to stand in long lines without shoes on, subjected to pat downs and body scans. This all for the privilege of being crammed like sardines into a tin can where we might sit on the tarmac for hours, with nary a pretzel or cup of tap water in sight.