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
London | Perth | Sydney | Melbourne
Seatguru - Most Comfy Seats On Any Airline
pprune.org - Pilot's rumour network
Kangaroo with a Sweet Tooth
Kronicles of Kris
The Adventures of Alle Malice
Joel's trek across Asia/Europe in a Hilux
Phil's Wine Site
I Can Has Cheezburger
The Flying Pinto
Girl on Raw
Things Bogans Like
Bobby at Up, Up and a Gay
Straight Guy in the Queer Skies
Skin by Falter
Wednesday, December 24, 2008One of the biggest sacrifices you make when you take on a job like this is having to work when the rest of the world is on holiday. Christmas Day, NYE, Easter, Eid, Queen's Birthdays, Kings Birthdays etc, we work them all. And don't even mention penalty rates here in DXB - Christmas Day is simply another day in the calendar, and we work them like every other airline does.
I missed my first Xmas in 2005 - I had only just gotten the job and was in training college, but it wasn't so bad as you were with your batchmates, plus I already had an early Xmas dinner with the family and the (then) boyfriend's family before leaving Perth. 2006 was fantastic, scheduling gave me 5 days off - 22-26th December, booked firm flights home and had an absolute ball. Mum even made it home which made things even more special considering how chaotic and emotional things were at the time.
2007 was the worst. I had the same days off, 22-26th. But couldn't book a flight anywhere. The best I could do was full-fare Business Class to go there, and a firm ticket coming back. My bank balance couldn't afford it, so I stayed home, and managed to swap onto a flight home on the 27th. But on Christmas Day I caught a very nasty cold, spent it in bed sweating and shaking, and was greeted with a phone call from Dad. As much as I love him the last thing I wanted to hear was what sort of roasts were in the Webber and who's cousin's kids got what for Christmas. I didn't really want to know what I was missing out on.
2008 is looking to be in the same spirit as last year unfortunately. My closest mates are either on layovers or leave, so it will be a very quiet day here in the Towers. I tried in vain to swap onto a nice layover, and despite getting onto a Dusseldorf, problems with my residence visa warranted removal from the roster until the 26th which was disappointing. Will probably spend the day at Dubai Mall having a spell at the Ice Rink (with a bit of luck it'll be empty) and then a massive ironing session to ready myself for the Milan flight I have coming up. Am hoping that a skate will break me out of this Bah Humbug mood I'm in at the moment.
If you do find yourself in a plane during these holidays, please spare a thought for the hostie pouring your 4th Jack Daniels and Coke for the hour. Yes we do travel and see places and get to live in a 'glamourous' city. But we give up many home comforts to do so. We give up special holidays with the family, birthdays, boozy arvos on the foreshore on Australia Day watching the Skyworks, and so on. Some of the crew even have kids back in their home country they support with this job, going for months without being able to operate or pax a flight home to see them. Go gentle on us, please.
And a Merry Christmas to everyone, where ever you may be 6 comments