flightmum











{July 26, 2013}   A Crappy flight

Morning flights are actually quite easy for us flight attendants to work because there are a lot of sleepers and only a handful of awake passengers to serve. Once we get past the initial shock of waking up at the cracks of dawn, we are ready to start our work day. Oh yeah. Coffee helps. A lot.

Bleary eyed passengers shuffle on board the aircraft and settle into their seats with their pillows and blankies looking to continue their shut eye. Most passengers are fast asleep before we hit cruising altitude.

For those passengers who brave to stay awake, we feed them some eggs and keep the coffee coming and coming. About 20 minutes later, the real trouble begins.

I am not sure if it’s the crappy food we serve onboard or the effects of the strong coffee we brew, but the line-ups for the lav are ferocious. One by one, they pile into the tiny washroom and have their morning constitution.  Sometimes I wonder how certain sized people fit into that tiny room. They must have the skills of a contortionous artist.

Every now and then, I hold my breath, spray some heavy duty air freshener into the toilet area and then retreat back to my jumpseat, which, incidentally is located right next to that stinky loo. Generally,  I am put off my yoghurt and granola after two bites.

Passengers after passenger files out of the lav, making sure they don’t make any eye contact so as not to betray the fact that they just had the biggest crap of their life. It’s the walk of shame back to their seats. Because really, who wants to poop on a plane? I think most of us would prefer to do our business in the comfort of our own home.

The worst is when you are next in line and you hear the double flush. Because let’s face it. We can hear everything going on in the airplane’s toilet. After the second flush, the passengers in line and I exchange nervous looks, knowing that whatever happened ‘in there’, was so big (or messy) that it wouldn’t go down the first flush. Yikes!

The door swings open, and the next passenger gulps,  gives me a nervous look and goes in there to face whatever they may find. Hoping that it’s not THAT bad.

I swear,  everyone on that plane has a shit during the morning.  I mean, I am glad that they eat their fibre and are regular. But, come on! There’s only so much one flight attendant can take before they gag.

Perhaps I should stick to afternoon flights after all.



{July 8, 2013}   Asiana flight 214

Typically,  when there is a plane crash, two observations come to play. One: People point their fingers at the pilots and scream: Pilot Error. Second,  the heroic acts of the flight attendants get all but forgotten. 

In this most recent accident,  many media outlets are talking about the fire fighters and the emergency response teams as the true heroes of this tragedy. The flight attendants, once again, have all but been forgotten. 

The flight attendants are just as much heroes as the other first responders. The flight attendants were the ones to shout their bracing commands to the passengers as the aircraft was about to crash land. They were the ones to assess the outside conditions,  open their emergency exits and pull the inflation handles. The flight attendants were the ones to command the passengers to release their seat belt and evacuate the aircraft.  Many passengers ‘freeze’ after a crash and they need the authoritative voice of the flight attendants to command them on what to do: Come this way. Cross your arms. Jump and Slide. 

Flight attendants, like myself, spend six intense weeks of training before we earn our ‘wings’. We need to earn 90% on our tests to pass initial training. Many intelligent people don’t make it. We learn about the ins and outs of each aircraft type. We become experts on fire fighting,  disruptive passengers, first aid procedures and evacuating an  aircraft in under two minutes.

We learn to check for danger and  then open our emergency doors that we had previously armed. We can jump into action in a planned or an unplanned emergency.  We learn how to survive in a deserted area or on a lifeboat. We take charge during a depressurization or an aborted landing. 

During each take-off and landing, we silently review all of our emergency procedures so as to be ready for any catastrophe. 

Every year, we attend a recurrent training about our emergency procedures to keep up to date with our procedures.

We are hired to save lives. Everything else, including your diet Coke and bag of peanuts, is just a bonus to you, the first passenger.

Bravo to the flight attendants of Asiana, flight 214. You did your job and saved lives. You make us proud. True heroes.



et cetera