Monday, June 28, 2010

Americans - Why are you SO cynical?

I just recently returned from Ireland a week ago Sunday. I was scheduled to return on Saturday but my flight was cancelled. I was scheduled to fly with Delta Airlines from Dublin to New York JFK to Toronto Pearson. I only have a few complaints relating to the inconveniences of numerous line ups, getting a hotel room and then being denied boarding on the next day's flight. The really bizarre part of the whole ordeal was the reaction of the other passengers.

It started as one of the airline personnel went up and down the line explaining the situation. Apparently there is only one flight per day and the flight crew wasn't trained to operate the plane that landed. I listened and moved on to asking questions about the next flight, our hotel room and other practical questions. The other passengers seemingly without exception insisted on pushing their various conspiracy theories. They were convinced that the airline was hiding something and believed that there had to be another reason that the flight was cancelled.

In various line ups I tried my best to explain my logic. I said the airline had no incentive to lie to us, stupid mistakes happen, and I was quite certain the airline wouldn't voluntarily take on all the extra expenses associated with cancelling a flight. But my efforts were fruitless - it didn't matter who I talked to, the other passengers remained convinced we were being lied to.

To my American readers, can you please offer any insight as to why your compatriots would find it so hard to trust in such a simple straight forward situation?