Melissa's Flight Attendant Blog

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Name: Melissa

About Me

Countries Visited (not including Turnarounds): Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Belgium, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Brazil, Canada, China, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Ghana, Great Britain, Greece, Iceland, India, Italy, Japan, Kenya, Latvia, Libya, Lithuania, Malaysia, Malta, Mauritius, Moldova, Monaco, Morocco, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nigeria, Norway, North Korea, Philippines, Romania, Russia, Singapore, Senegal, Serbia, Seychelles, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sweden, Switzerland, Tanzania, Thailand, Tunisia, Turkey, Uganda, United Arab Emirates, United States, Vatican City

My Perfect Day in -
London | Perth | Sydney | Melbourne

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Airline Uniforms
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Seatguru - Most Comfy Seats On Any Airline
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Kangaroo with a Sweet Tooth
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Tray Table
I Can Has Cheezburger
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Girl on Raw
Things Bogans Like
Bobby at Up, Up and a Gay
Straight Guy in the Queer Skies

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Skin by Falter

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Latest Updates
Sunday, November 02, 2008
So I'm writing this whilst on Airport Standby, which is most likely my last duty on reserve before I revert back to my lovely normal roster. It's only 3 hours long, from 6-9am, and I have to admit that with my recent sleeping pattern of up at 11am, asleep by 2am, I started the duty quite fatigued, and VERY cranky. We're lucky these days, when I first started in this job, there was just these gross couches cleaned semi-regularly, one small TV with constant soccer, coffee that could barely be called that. Nowdays there are lounging chairs, WI-FI, a Costa cafe downstairs, and a big widescreen TV, which at the moment is currently showing Mulholland Drive.

One thing significantly different about this standby compared to the others is that it is shared with the Airbus 380 crew. And whilst a lot of this post may come across as being a case of Tall Poppy Syndrome, I really do get the feeling they're prancing around the Standby Lounge as if they own the place. I do have a few friends on the fleet (the lovely Toby being one of them) but the ones on standby today really did seem to make themselves noticed. I mean, having a completely different uniform doesn't particularly help, but there's no need to leap up from the couches, go to the kitchenette, pace around the computers for someone to get off. Constantly go in and out of the 'quiet room' making just enough noise to wake people up, but not so loud as to look inconsiderate. Wait by the reception desk and have a giggle when the rest of us non-380 crew get lumped with a shocker flight, or a 9 day Brisbane-Singapore which most standby crew rarely pack well for. They really don't integrate well, only talking amongst themselves, don't really socialise with the rest of us old fleet scum.

So on that note, I guess I'm going to write here why I didn't go for the new fleet. Some readers and friends of mine, I guess awed by what Singapore have brought out, could not fathom that I would not want to be on this flying double decker bus.
  • The biggest reason of all. It doesn't, and will not, go to Perth. At least not while I'm still working here. If I wasn't given the option of bidding or swapping for flights home, I would go mental here. Seriously.
  • My upgrade to First from Business would likely have been delayed for an additional 6-9 months
  • It was a 2 year contract. If I didn't like it I couldn't exactly go back to the other fleets so easily.
  • Stress. There are always teething problems when new aircraft arrive, regardless of aircraft type. And 72 business passengers (or 14 first class passengers, had I actually gotten my upgrade) complaining that their In Flight Entertainment screen was broken, or their seats wouldn't recline, or not getting the food out quickly and hot enough because the one or all the ovens are faulty, is something that would keep me awake at night.
  • Lack of variety. New York. New York. London. New York. I love NYC to bits, and London is alright, but sometimes you just want to go somewhere hot in January, or somewhere tropical like Mauritius, or be somewhere exotic like Tanzania. And according to Business Traveller Magazine, the first two turnarounds earmarked for the new fleet are Jeddah and Bombay. No thanks!
  • Flying hours. I'm quite frugal with money, and am saving up quite a bit, hoping to buy a property either here in Dubai, Europe or Oz. The new fleet don't really get a lot of flying hours, around 80 hours at it's peak, with 52 being the norm at the moment. I try to get about 100hrs every month. My former flatmate Lauren has a whopping 20 days off in her roster this month, and even if I did get that many hours, the amount of money spent on plane tickets to chew up the large amount of time off quickly outweighs the amount earned.
  • Whilst a lot of people rave about how much of an engineering marvel it is and whatnot, it's a bit hard to appreciate with almost 600 passengers to look after. And not only that but it's gone tech twice now. Like the DC's, , Lockheeds, and Boeings, it is just another aircraft, getting you from A to B.
So what has happened since Paris? Not a lot really, a London Gatwick, a Casablanca, and a lot of days off. Did my standard Marks and Spencer's run (esp pork products) in LGW and had a Hammam in Casablanca for 10 MAD ($1.5 USD) which was an absolute bargain considering the hotel were charging $17USD for theirs. If you haven't had a hammam before I highly suggest you try it, it really is a bizarre experience. Essentially it's extreme exfoliation, someone uses a rough mitt and scrubs you until you can literally see all the dark yucky dead skin peel off your body. The process itself is quite harsh but the end result is totally worth it. Baby-smooth skin, well on some parts anyway.

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