Travelling during the holiday season can be a hectic experience. Airports are busy, people tend to be bogged down by extra extra luggage filled with gifts, and the weather is terrible so flight delays are common.
People can be stuck for hours in a terminal waiting for their flights, many of them alone as they travel to see family or make an end-of-the-year-business trip.
So, being in the airport can be an isolating experience even though it's a great place to meet people you never would have otherwise.
One of the greatest joys of travelling is having a beer at the airport bar with someone from far away whose in the middle of an exciting journey. People tend to get a little extra liquored up in airport bars because they don't have to drive anytime soon and it makes it easier to sleep on the plane.
"Airports generally aren't the cosiest places on the planet. Which is strange, because they do have all the right ingredients: people, food, drink, lots of different cultures," KLM Royal Dutch Airlines' blog reads.
"But most people prefer to zone out at airports. The put on their headphones, focus on their phone or laptop, or read a book," the blog continued.
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So three years ago, KLM came up with a genius way to get lonely travelers together during the holiday season.
The airport placed a dinner table with a full holiday dinner for 20 15 feet above the ground. Every time a person sat down in a stool the table lowered a foot or so closer to the floor.
Every time someone stood out of their stool, the table raised higher off the ground.
So those who were eager to sample the holiday meal were forced to find strangers to sit down at the table with them.
After twenty people from places far and wide finally sat down at the table it was at the perfect hiehght to dig in to a bountiful feast.
"They sang songs and raised their glasses to life," KLM's blog read. "The dinner was everything we hoped it would be and we sincerely hope we managed to convey the spirit of Christmas to everyone who joined us at the table."
Although KLM's human experiment was clearly done for marketing purposes it still makes a few beautiful truths.
Something magical happens when we all put down our phones and open up to those around us. Powerful things can hppen when we set aside our differences, set down our phones, and break bread with some strangers.
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