How I changed my life, career and bank account by merely crossing the Hudson.

Monday, December 24, 2012

It was a Christmas Miracle

Dear Santa,
Thank you for giving me the 23rd off. We had a joyous celebration and I've enjoyed Christmas Eve off too.
It's been a Christmas Miracle. 
I'm not ungrateful, just greedy.........may I have Christmas Day off too?
With Love,
Merry Christmas

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A Christmas Wish

I am being ask three important questions this year; 
  1. Am I cooking Christmas dinner?
  2. What is for dinner?
  3. What time is dinner?  
I'm endlessly replying that I don't know. I live by the whims of scheduling. But this year I am planning for an Old Fashion Christmas. Just like in the days when I held a line my lovely assistants and I have placed the holly is on the mantle, decorated the tree and laid the fire. We are expecting 20 family members and I am hoping against hope the phone doesn't ring. So please scheduling, take me off your list and forget about me. 
In an effort to thwart fate, we've planned Christmas dinner for December 23rd. (In true airline employee style.) We are laying the table, building a home made dessert buffet and putting the roast beef in the oven. I've hung the stockings on the chimney with care in hopes that I'll still be here.
But just in case you decide to give me a ring my able assistants are trained to carry on in my absence.
The weather is forecast to be sunny and cold. There is no need to call me dear scheduling.
 I promise if my Christmas dream comes true I'll take back all the rotten things I said about you in the past year. I'll even remove that picture of Freddy that appears when you call and I'll fly anywhere with nary a complaint. I'm counting on you, please don't let me down.
Happy Christmas to all Flight Attendants everywhere and may all your Christmas dreams come true.

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Tuesday, December 4, 2012


 It's a tough choice. Whether to work through your vacation and earn gobs of money or travel abroad and spend gobs of money. What's a crossover to do? Well this crossover traveled because for me vacation is a therapeutic experience. Just when I think I'm  going to pull my hair out and run for the closest exit vacation comes along and I have time to re-energize.
That's the beauty of vacation, it exists to excite your imagination and change the venue of your life.  My most recent vacation I spent in Vichy, France with friends. 
We cooked and ate the most marvelous things. I practiced my french, had lunch with a couple who live in an 11th century tower (How cool is that?) 
 and helped cater a brunch for 20 people. I tried the most amazing walnut oil made by Brigitte(the woman from the tower), picked blackberries along the road, slept in a dove cote, and renewed a friendship with a 75 year old woman that only speaks french and cooks like Paul Bocuse. 
Did I mention that every meal is at least 3 courses in France? An entree begins the meal, the  plat is then served, followed by cheese and a sweet. No wonder I put on a few pounds. But worthy pounds. Pounds that have pleasure in every dimple of cellulite. 
It was difficult but I left the  well manicured ancient buildings of France for the softly crumbling monuments of Rome. Delicious, luscious and raucous Rome. I found myself lusting for gelato, sfogliatelle and goblets of red wine alongside mounds of creamy pasta. Could life be any better? I don't think so, I have the best of all worlds. Next time I may or may not work through my vacation, who knows. But I'm grateful to have the ability to choose. 

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Sunday, October 14, 2012

Flying with the Pioneers..... The Air Mike Crossovers

Just recently I had the pleasure of flying with a couple Air Mike crossovers. It was fun exchanging information and ideas. After all they blazed the trail.
 They had both been at Air Mike 15+ years and still believe they made the right choice coming to S-CO. We all agree that going to bottom of the seniority list while difficult at times it was well worth it for the upgrade in pay and flexibility.
  Not to mention all the nice people we've come to know.
 Thanks ladies for a fabu trip! It was a pleasure flying with a couple of pioneers!

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Saturday, September 8, 2012

I'm Cheating on the Bar Cart

I'm sorry baby. I know I promised to be true but sweets, I've just met the FA01 position on the 777 and I've been swept off my feet. Tucked in a secluded corner, we met and instantly fell for one another. When I saw those sweet bun warmers, I pulled the curtain and vowed we would get to know one another better.
 So caring you catered to my every need. You kept my champagne chilled, my plates hot and my toes  warm. Even when I was sated you kept offering more.........
 A small cart with a  handy shelf,
and a sophisticated silver water pitcher so I wasn't walking through the First Class cabin with a plastic bottle in my hand.
 Yes, my love, you made me feel like a 
Princess. Comfortable, safe and happy wrapped in a cocoon of aluminum. I promise very soon we will never part. Your the bid position of my dreams.
Now all we need is that combined contract!
  The crew was pretty terrific! A huge THANKS! to Lance and Vidat for walking me through my first 777 A zone galley. It was bliss boys. And so nice to fly with a fellow crossover. Well done Terry.
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Tuesday, August 28, 2012


Change is inevitable. No matter what we do everything changes around us. All those platitudes about time marching on, growing older and hopefully wiser seem to be true. For years I flew the SFO downtown layover. I loved the hotel and all aspects of it. I had my favorite Indian, Thai and Italian restaurants. The staff at the Starbucks on the corner knew my name and drink. I preferred the purser position but would fly  F/C or B/C galley (much to the reserve's surprise). Unfortunately staffing went from 6 to 5, layovers from 23 hours to 19hours and 56 minutes (20 hours and over requires a downtown layover on the S-UA side). My favorite hotel redecorated their rooms, the staff changed at Starbucks and the Crossover became a reality. Change was clearly due. I leaped at the chance to re-energize my flying career. I wanted new opportunities to make flying as exciting as it was 22 years ago. The Crossover made that dream a reality. I enjoy a varied flying experience with long and short layovers at my finger tips. Plus the added bonus of having my seniority is back to where it was 22 years ago! ;-) Surprisingly  enough I'm OK with that.
When my friends on the S-UA side ask how things are, they are generally asking about flying reserve, being at the bottom of the seniority list and my pay status. I can honestly say things are good. Just when I'm sick of waiting for scheduling to call a new month begins and I am able to pick up trips.  I'm enjoying new destinations and new friends. Best of all I actually have money in my pocket (except on those occasions when my daughter's college expenses rears it's ugly head). I'm paying my bills, saving for a rainy day, accruing a pension and looking forward to the time we have a merged contract.
Thanks Sam and thanks AFA for working it out and allowing all 119 of us to enjoy the perks of the Crossover Agreement. 

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Friday, August 24, 2012

A Few More of My Favorite Things

United Global First Class is at the top of my "favorites" list. It's a small intimate cabin where one is pampered and treated like royalty. In the new configuration every seat is an island unto itself. The quiet comfort of a small cabin is worth it's weight in gold after the nerve jarring trip thorough the airport to reach the gate. I believe it's nice to be met by a smiling flight attendant offering a welcoming beverage while being settled into a cocoon of comfort aboard an exclusive First Class cabin. As the Wandering Aramean has indicated First Class is rapidly disappearing on US Airlines. S-UA has always been proud to offer a three class experience to Europe, Asia, The Middle East  and South America. Just recently I flew F/C from EWR to IST to my great joy I observed the passengers around me commenting on the comfort and quality of our first class cabin. Let's keep this experience alive for our guests.
S-CO has these marvelous Espresso machines for our lucky Business/ First guests. Made with espresso pods and using disposable tubes to heat and froth the milk we serve up a wonderful cappuccino and espresso. For an amazing treat, utilize the chocolate sauce from the Ice cream Sundae bar for a yummy Mocha.
All that is needed is a sprinkle of cinnamon or chocolate shavings on the top. Long live the espresso machine!
The visible stand-by list. No, not the printed list taped to the side of the podium but the real live monitor giving everyone, revenue and non- revs alike the opportunity to see where they fall on the list for seats and  upgrades. I have a feeling this could be one of the agents favorite things too.
The flying public loves Direct TV. If the first question on most passenger's lips is "Is First Class full?" the second is "Does this plane have Direct TV?" How wonderful to respond with "Yes, please help yourself to a headset." Unlike movies or "Short-Subjects" Direct TV offers something for everyone.
The Diamonds on Wings indicating years of service is a sweet reminder of time spent making passengers comfortable, working with friends and colleagues, and lastly helping to  build the best airline the industry has to offer. Everyone looked forward to those 5 year anniversaries where a new set of wings with another diamond was given in some cases with fanfare at before flight  briefings.
A bag or compartment that is dedicated to seat belt extensions. Need I say more?
Pockets!!!!! Hands down it's the one thing I miss from my S-UA uniform. Pockets sewn into jackets, vests, skirts, shirts, dresses and pants come in handy for carrying flashlights, Ids/Pairings, passenger paperwork and van tips.
This placard indicating capacity is found on all s-co aircraft. There is no guessing the aircraft type, load or lighting. Just read the placard. What was that they said in training? "If you can read you can be a flight attendant." I think we all agree it takes more than that but how nice to have information at your finger tips.

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