Dirty, Yucky Planes

I don’t expect much from airlines these days, so what made me think they would have the tray tables wiped down between flights? This story about the cleaning practices for commercial aircraft certainly shattered that illusion.

I guess I’m going to start traveling with Clorox wipes. It’s the next logical step after hand sanitizer. And, I swear, I’m no kind of clean freak. In fact, I kind of feel like a stooge, obsessively cleaning my hands and wiping down surfaces.

The truth is, though, we’re particularly vulnerable to illness when we travel. More people from more places passing through the same spaces equals more germs. And we don’t have much exposure or resistance to foreign germs, as I learned when I picked up hell colds in Russia and Spain.

So I guess you do what you can. After reading that the most germ-ridden spots on a cruise ship are the elevator control panels, I started taking the stairs and carrying hand sanitizer around.  After reading that the tray tables on planes are usually cleaned once a month, I’m going to have to wipe them down myself.

Let’s not even get into the whole hotel bedspread thing. It’s not as if I can carry a washing machine with me.

I used to think that someday I would have traveled so widely that  I’d be immune to everything. (East Mongolian Sheep Flu? Hah! Had that … ) I’ve come to realize that it’s far more likely that one of these stray germs will kill me. Unless I kill it first.


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