Web access no relief for aching back

My trip to Boston for Thanksgiving started bad and got worse.

Boarded the plane in plenty of time, but as we taxied down the runway at SFO, the smells began. Oil was burning somewhere and everyone had to deplane. The plane rode off to an EPA-designated area to burn-off excess oil that had spilled. When it returned (several hours later!), we re-boarded and started our take off only to have the smell return and have to deplane again.

Luckily, the third time was a charm; we boarded a different plane without incident.

Boston was great. (Nice job on the turkey Clare!). The return trip was on time. During a long stopover I strolled through the Dallas/Ft. Worth airport and noticed two large massage chairs for rent. Cost? $1 for the first three minutes and up from there. Two people were happily being auto-rubbed. I asked one how it was. “Not bad,” she said. “Definitely worth trying for a buck.”

I walked around a bit more and found a “free” Internet terminal. Great idea. For once, I didn’t bring my HP notebook with me for the trip (highly recommended if you truly want to take a vacation from work), so it was a good time to get caught up on my Web surfing.

The free Internet came with a few hitches though. First off, you have to click on some ad offers to surf freely. This was pretty painless though as only a few of the ads required any payment or commitment other than a few click-throughs. But you only get ten free minutes. Also, there’s a little count-down timer in the corner of the screen, silently imploring you to make every click count even as other would-be surfers stare daggers at you waiting their turn.

The other, literal, pain point, was the backless stoop of a chair in front of the terminal. Five minutes of leaning forward had my balky back pining for one of the robo-massage chairs and even springing for the $5 extended play.

No such luck. When I got there, two new people were snoozing on the comfy chairs without paying a dime. Smart move, because even without paying for the robot fingers, those chairs were way more comfortable than the molded plastic that passes for furniture at the airport.

Here’s an idea. How about combining the Internet terminal with a massage chair? I might even spring for a ten spot instead of logging off with leg cramps.

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