The milestones just keep coming. Over the weekend I received an e-mail under the subject line, “Happy 25th Anniversary.” It was from American Airlines. I wondered how the company knew my husband and I had recently celebrated our silver wedding anniversary.
I opened the message. It seems I have been an AAdvantage member for a quarter of a century, almost half of my life. Looking back, this would be right. It was 1986 that I began travelling for business. I worked for a Texas company, so American was my first airline relationship. As a newsletter editor, I covered banking and technology conferences around the country, so I also signed up as a frequent flyer with the other carriers. So far, American has been the first to commemorate the relationship.
I looked within the body of the e-mail to see how I’d be thanked for 25 years as a loyal passenger. “Thank you for your business” was pretty much the extent of it.
That’s okay. It would be cliché to complain about what the airlines aren’t doing any more. Still, as with any anniversary, it’s hard to resist harkening back to the honeymoon. The airline ticket would arrive in my office a week or so before the trip, in a silver matte jacket provided by the company travel agent. I could go through security with my pumps on and there was no laptop computer to place in the bin. After lengthy and tiring meetings, I looked forward to a hot serving of lasagna, a cute little salad, a roll with butter and a slab of chocolate sponge cake on the flight home–in Coach.
Twenty-five years together. Couldn’t they at least have sent me a coupon for a pillow?