flightmum











{February 11, 2013}   Pass me my scalpel, flight attendant. Stat.

A few weeks ago,  I flew with a  shiny brand new flight attendant.  He had only been ‘on the line’ for a few weeks.  Except,  instead of being in his 20’s, like most of our new hires, he was in his early 50’s. And he was a terrible flight attendant.  He had zero enthusiasm,  he had as much personally as a cardboard box and he just didn’t ‘get’ the job. He should have been more on the ball, after a few weeks experience of flying with us.  I am not saying that my job is so difficult that you have to be a brain surgeon to do it. But, this career is not for everyone.  Especially at the beginning,  it is a young person’s job. I don’t want to discriminate with ageism, but when you first get hired,  you make very little money (we’re talking below poverty line) and you are on call or what we call reserve where you don’t know when or where you are flying. Our crew schedulers can change your pairing (flights), as often as they need to. You can be working an all-nighter one night and then an early morning departure the next day. It’s tough on your body and your sleep patterns. It’s difficult to recover in your 20’s, let alone your 50’s. Once I am his age,  I will have enough seniority that I will be working the desirable flights and won’t have to deal with the jet lag. 

Now I know many intelligent people who could NOT do my job, my husband included.  You have to be FLEXIBLE and go with the flow because you never know when your flight will go mechanical or when you will be stuck on the aircraft in a snow storm. All of a sudden,  you ARE NOT going home, even though it is your day off and you have plans that evening.  It is out of your control. You also have to be PATIENT with assholes and the likes. You can’t tell them to ‘F’ off like you want to. Instead, you have to ‘kill’ them with kindness. That’s the  way we roll.

I am not saying that  new hire buddy won’t make it through probation. After all, he did pass initial training which is surprisingly difficult in itself.  But, if he wants to make it in this business, he’ll have to turn his frown upside down.

Now, if you will excuse me, I need to perform a triple bypass. Clear.

 

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