My first commercial flight was in 1976. Three friends of mine had just graduated high school and were getting ready to start college. Republic airlines had a $290 special from Minneapolis to Seattle. It was a 727 and I still remember the meal. It was trout with rice pilaf and one of the best pieces of cheese cake I can remember. We had five fun filled days exploring the Olympic Peninsula.
Since then I have flown a lot. Not as much as Marc but I am somewhere over 3/4 of a million miles. I flew a lot for business and flew all over the country and the world in everything from puddle jumpers to 777's but it wasn't until 2006 did I fly in a 747. Nothing special but I always thought it strange that all the International flights over the years were either DC10's or Airbus aircraft.
I have no problem on an airplane. I'm like AR, I often fall asleep before takeoff. My wife hates me for it. She isn't afraid of flying but needs to get up and walk around as much as she can. On our last flight home from London we both had to be up at 2:00 a.m. to get a coach from Brighton to LHR for a 9:30 a.m. flight. This is the only flight I can remember that she slept more than I did.
In all the years I have had a few problem flights, cancellations, delays and missed flights but nothing to get worked up about.
I have a hard time understanding how some folks get such terrible flights. Then again there are people like my sister. I flew with her a few years back from MSP to Hawaii. Her husband and her were quite a few rows back from my wife and I so we didn't get too much of a chance to visit during the flight. When we got off my sister was acting like she had just got off "The Flight From Hell". There was one small bit of turbulence about half way through the flight and it was otherwise smooth. She couldn't believe how rough it was and she was in fear the entire flight. She deserved a "Drama Queen" award. I had to tell her to "Knock it off". The flight home was more turbulent but I never heard a bit of "Drama Queen" come out. Her husband was greatful.
I do believe the more worked up you are about flying the more the "little" things are going to bother you.
I have to end by saying that flying isn't as "comfortable" as it used to be and the service isn't as good but the prices are actually less than what they used to be so I look at it as a means to an end. If you want the white glove service of yesteryear then fork over the $7000+ and fly First Class on your next trip to Europe. (Or save up those FF Miles)