Music City

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CMA Fest in downtown Nashville

An Evening on Oahu

For my one-monthiversary of becoming a flight attendant, I decided to go to Hawaii. OK, I actually figured out how to get a work trip there, DSCN9753but that’s still pretty cool because it’s considered an international destination (it’s more than a certain number of miles over water) and no one in my class had really done a cool trip like that yet. I was pretty excited as I boarded the plane and my crew told me a little about the hotel (Ala Moana) and that it was within walking distance of Waikiki Beach, and I began to plan out my 24-hour stay.

I called up one of my friends from Semester at Sea who lives in Honolulu, and to my delighted surprise she offered to drive me around wherever I wanted to go. I decide that I wanted to go to Pearl Harbor, and after a long flight we drove there and I spotted the USS Arizona memorial across the water. Unfortunately, the last boat had gone for the day and we were left with just the USS Bowfin submarine museum and the visitor’s center, but that was fine by me. The weather was humid and it sprinkled rain on me as I paid my respects to the men lost in naval battles around the world.

All that history had made me hungry, so I asked my friend to take me to a place where locals would go. She took me to a little place called Yama’s Fish Market, where I bought tried ahi poke, with its strong soy sauce flavor, and indulged in some yummy kalua pig. If you’re ever in Hawaii, you must try kalua pig! It’s delicious and completely heart-healthy (not). Instead of going to trendy Waikiki to eat, my friend took me to the other side of Diamond Head to a very small beach called Cromwell’s, near Queen’s Bath, a place I never would have discovered without her. We sat in the golden sand and ate with our plastic forks as the sun turned the sky pink, and a curious hDSCN9749onu (sea turtle) poked its head above the waves to say hello. And I was getting paid for it all.

Lobstas and Lighthouses

They say that flight attending isn’t a job, it’s a lifestyle. I’ve definitely had a small taste of that over the last few weeks. I’ve barely worked, although part of it is because there’s nothing really good to pick up and part of it is just that I needed some time off after the grueling training. I’ve actually traveling more days than I’ve worked, which is amazing for the soul but horrible for the wallet.

Nubble Light, Ogunquit, Maine

Nubble Light, Ogunquit, Maine

I’m not really sure what the mysterious allure is when I’m in uniform, but it’s as if people look at me differently. Maybe they think of glamour and jetsetting, and hey, I’m fine with that. Everything is definitely new and exciting to me right now, so maybe I just give off the new hire glow. I’m not sure what it is, but I hope I never lose the sense of wonder that I have and that other people seem to have when they see me in uniform.

As far as working, I’ve done 2 turns (where I go and come back in the same day) to Chicago and San Jose del Cabo, Mexico. Those are tiring and I don’t get a layover, so so far I don’t think they’re as cool. I also had a trip to Miami, I laidover there but I slept all day because the flight got in early in the morning. Basically I haven’t done anything cool as far as work is concerned yet, but I’m still getting used to it.

I’ve been much more interested in using my travel benefits, which my boyfriend loves so far! (stay tuned for his upcoming unnamed travel blog, he takes much better photos than me) He flew out to LA to visit me after graduation and we roadtripped it up to Monterey along the famed Highway 1, or PCH as we say in California. It was a drive-until-we-drop type trip, with many random detours to places like Ostrich Land, a tourist trap where we paid to feed ostriches. A few days later to decided to fly out to Boston and roadtrip up the other Highway 1, up the New England coast to Maine, solely in search of stuffing ourselves with lobsta. We had a wonderful lobsta dinner at The Lobster Shack, a place in Port Elizabeth with a gorgeous setting next to a lighthouse with waves crashing into rocky cliffs below. I highly recommend their fresh catch!

My next work destination is Toronto, and fun destination with the boyfriend is New Orleans in about a week. Our travel list grows ever longer however, and to choose we basically just have to flip a coin because the sky is literally the limit.

Big Sur, California

Big Sur, California

Graduation

After a grueling 8 ½ week schedule, I have finally graduated flight attendant training! It was a long, hard road, and at some times I didn’t think I’d make it, but I finally did. There were tears, late nights, stressful mornings and classes I thought would never end, but now I have my shiny silver wings.

Fly Girl

Fly Girl

As we walked the stage, my class manager stated that it was a unique graduation in that it’s not the end of something, but really just the beginning as we embark on our unique and incredible careers (or lifestyles, as some would say). This could not be anymore truthful, because as proud as I felt at graduation, my first flight is looming over me and I feel butterflies and dread and all other kinds of nervousness. The days of my instructors holding my hand are over, and I am thrown into the real world of responsibility.

All I need is experience though, and being thrown in the deep end, I’ll get that sooner rather than later. Right now I’m a baby, but very soon I’ll be flying and taking responsibility for that cabin. Whether it’s serving a Coke or maintaining security, I’m nervous for the whole thing. Wish me luck!

I Can See the Light

The light at the end of the tunnel might be a pinprick, but it’s finally there. I have 18 days left, and it simultaneously feels like I’ve been here for years but also that it’s flown by.  I’m now officially certified on the Super 80, Boeing 737, 757 and 767, working on the 777-200 now.  Even though it’s a day off, we don’t really have any “days off”.  On the one hand though, flight attendants cite one reason they love their jobs is because once they’re out there flying, when they get home they’re home and have no homework or things to do pertaining to their job and can just enjoy being home (or, more likely in my case, traveling).

Jump and slide! Jump and slide!

Jump and slide! Jump and slide!

It was a sobering discovery last night though to realize that the exact same plane we’re studying right now is missing somewhere over Vietnamese airspace with 239 people on board, including 12 crew.  CNN says that it’s not looking good, and it really brings home the reality of how dangerous this job can be, and why we spend 8 weeks here in training.  I can guarantee that any flight attendants that survived that situation tried to help as many people as possible.  I haven’t spent the last weeks learning how to push a cart and serve a Coke, that’s for sure.  Flight attendants are considered first responders, along with firefighters, cops and EMTs.  Respect your flight attendants, people, they might save your life one day!

On a lighter note, our long days have been filled with as many drills and exams as they could possibly throw at us, and I’m kind of impressed by the rock stars I have in my class.  Everyone is holding up surprisingly well, though we’re all in tiny little spaces together all day and lacking on sleep, fresh air and freedom.  Next week we get into the pool to play in the survival rafts, and we also get to tour the lovely 777-300 aircraft, I can’t wait to fly non-rev first class on that one!

Crew bags

Crew bags

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