Thursday, May 28, 2009

Expect the unexpected...ain't that the truth !

To continue from my last post, the changes to my roster kept coming, I had a Kuwait turn around changed to an Amman turn around and my Lagos layover changed to Johannesburg. So in all, i worked 7 days straight doing 3 flights, Guangzhou, Amman and Johannesburg ! I can say that I am tired as an owl lol Typing this blog at 4:27 am is quite strange ! But not stranger then attempting (3 rd try) to cook up some Butterscotch squares at midnight ! Originally I planned to go out, but all the ingredients were there and I needed to satisfy my self by successfully baking those damn yummy cookies :) which happened and boy will I have a major tummy ache by the time I finish posting this blog. Back to J-burg as they call it, I had a lot of stereotypes about South Africa , some of them were broken but others were reinforced ! The flight was quite particular, and kind of represented what my stereotypes were, specially when it came to customers asking for something and not saying PLEASE... is that too much to ask ? or they think they pay for the right to boss us around like robots with money back guaranteed ? ( click on this link to another fellow blogger who expresses fully what I experienced : AIRBOY ) 

After an 8 hour flight and arriving at sweet home Dubai at 8 am, I decided to go see my manager and talk about what is going on with him not replying to my emails and about my ABSENT showing on my roster in April following my eventful passport and visa issues. He seemed to be as shocked as I was when he told me that He thought everything was settled...( Dear reader I encourage you to use your imagination and think of what went through my mind at that precise moment and what colorful choice words were hanging at the tip of my tongue ! ).
Apparently my ABSENT will be removed,  but I will still be paying , as it will be replaced by another day of LEAVE, my yearly balance diminishing yet again. Oh well ! For now my plan is to have my 8 days leave for june cancelled and just take 19 days in October in sweet home Montreal or where ever, going back to Haiti has been tingling in my brain recently, we'll see !

I have one day off, then 2 back to back Istanbul turn arounds during the week end... As for June roster, Melbourne, Johannesburg again and Shanghai !

Click for photos : Butterscotch Success !

Later :)

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Butterscotch , Moscow no Guangzhou...

Crazy past days, I had 2 days off and decided to finally give a try at making one of my favorites dessert cookies Butterscotch squares !!! First attempt was a complete disaster, I used too much butter, burned it and still continued doing the recipe. By the time everything was mixed together and the dough was ready to go to the oven, I thought seriously that it would be a success, well, I managed to burn it, pitch black CRAZY ( click here for pictures: Butterscotch ) . But on my second attempt did not burn it, but was funny how I melted the brown sugar completely and having it harden as fast and wondering how could I possibly make a dough out of hard caramel lol . In all a funny experience, crash and burn will best describe my time in the kitchen cooking it up between midnight and 5am lol Why, because my internal clock is out of whack !

Next story, I was suppose to fly to Moscow, and the best, I would be deadheading most likely in business class, as the flight was oversold, however this did not happen, I got taken off that flight and put on to go to Guangzhou in China... No idea where that city was or it's existence, the flight to there and from there was pure HELL ... The passengers were the most demanding I have ever met ... I get so frustrated when people keep asking for thing with out the magic word PLEASE ... Actually it drives me crazy , I guess it is something I will have to learn to manage if I want to survive in this industry. During hour 24 hour layover there, I slept in the whole time, ordering room service to keep my body alive lol I have to say the Hotel is one of the best I have ever laid my eyes on , simply incredible, but cannot say the same about the time in the air !

Next flight Amman, Jordan turnaround followed by Lagos, Nigeria layover...


Sunday, May 17, 2009

Glasgow...Personality disorder !

I was excited to go to Glasgow from the first second I saw it on my roster. I had checked the passenger load a few days before the flight and not to my surprise, full going and coming back. Now I was thinking it would be an easy flight , specially when during boarding I saw that everyone , well almost, were Scottish. How wrong could I have been, this has been the hardest working flight to date, there was nothing left in our bars, NOTHING, they drank everything, when the gin was over they moved on to the whisky, and when the wine was over they started buying champagne. This was a day flight on top of everything !!! I was brutally tired when we arrived in Glasgow around 2pm , but the shops close early even on a friday, so I use up my backup energy to go shopping, where else then Primark , the cloth look good, and are cheap, and the quality, well, you get what you paid for, but so far my undies seem to be good. It is strange how people have completely different personalities while working and off work, there is no consistency, therefor it makes it difficult to feel there interaction outside of work to be natural and sincere. I experienced this full frontal lol during this trip, some people have the natural talent of being professional while keeping the same attitude both on and off work, so they don't look too crazy. But others, oh my god, it is absolutely freaky lol Enough of that, does who are in the flying business know what I mean, and well even working in the office it happens, but it seems to be happening at a greater level up in the air !

Unfortunately I did not take any pictures on this trip, why you might ask, well, besides the fact that Glasgow has a gloomy weather which seems to be year round, I was dead tired, and did I mention that I managed to go for drinks on that same evening, drinks are so cheap there, no wonder everyone is outrageously drunk there by 7pm lol


Monday, May 11, 2009

London, Wax and socializing !

Continuing this month of getting back in the air, after discovering Beijing off I was to London, been there done that, but not quite enough, this is a wonderful city to do everything, shop, eat, dance, fall in love, you name it , the possibilities are endless. The flight there was not eventfull but we fly a particular kind of people, the ones who never thought one day they would be on a plane and be treated to first class service while seating in economy ! It is something human behavior , sometimes I wish we had a Dr Phil on board to explain certain characters on board that I call special. For the first time since I've started flying with EK I was super tired  once I got to the hotel, I mostly blame it to the pairing I did before, or just the fact of working hard on board. The next day woke up early having slept a real good night rest, went for the usual breakfast buffet, and once again gagged on bacon , shoved as much as possible into my stomach. Then out we were to the city, oddly enough no one remembered that in London the stores open only at noon , being a sunday, so we uselessly woke up at 7am to meet at 8am, oh well, next time we will just have to party late and hard . Once in to town we headed to Starbucks for some coffee, cake, etc. and headed for the shops , after not finding anything or should I say not wanting to spend too much we headed to Madame Tussauds wax museum, I had more fun then what originally expected, so that was good. 

Socializing, the past weeks I found myself being more open and conversational to people I meet, I don't know what has gotten into me but I like it lol I have this tendency to sticking to the one or two people I feel comfortable with and shouting down the door to the rest of the world. In my defense I have to say it's not given to everyone to be lovy dovy ! But can one be too friendly, as in any life situation when 2 or more human beings are interacting, it is quite challenging to stay in the middle line and not go over our boundaries as well as others. I also found myself in a place where I always want to avoid, being possessive lol Will not go into details, but you all know what I am talking about here, that feeling of wanting everything to go your way but it does not , maybe the right words for this syndrome should be Control freak ! But I see myself more of a passive control freak then an active one lol What am I talking about ?!?!? 

to be continued....

Click here for pictures : London

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Back in the air again !

I finally got my passport back last thursday with a brand new visa on it ! One would think my troubles were done...That same day I was rostered to do a Turn around flight, which I was told 4 days prior that I would be removed from it, well turns out some one was sleeping and I got marked Absent...Fuming I was, but since I have all the evidence (emails) I will not make a great fuss about it, at this point I have done my part, it's just that you get a salary deduction (sort of penalty) from missing a flight, and if this is not corrected before the next pay , you better beleive it I will be a betch on steroids. 

My first flight after 20 days was Beijing , and how delighted I was, specially with my May roster : Beijing, London, Glasgow, Moscow, Lagos. I am someone that is not easily impressed, remembering back at my first trip to London where I could not be bothered and now I just get so excited to go there. I am weird. Well same thing is happening with Beijing, I got there, and I was like, that's it ? I think it was the frustration of having my passport number not updated in the flights general declaration where I was delaying the whole crew explaining to the local authorities that discrepancy . Moving on, we got in town around 3pm , quick nap and off we were to diner , I always had nightmares of eating out in Asian countries ! probably due to mass marketing of unsanitary practices there in restaurant in the western medias. Diner was awesome and cheap, One of my best diners on a layover, not as good as Paris but different. Next day, we (the crew) rented a car with driver and went on to visit the Great Wall of China, I was really excited about that, the landscape is quite odd, a bunch of old crippled houses made out of old reddish bricks and dirt everywhere, but also a lot of trees ! Got at the station to start the tour and immediately we were bombarded by locals trying to make a sale ... I am pretty aggressive when someone is in my face, even more when I don't understand the language and I say no ! That's the negative I will be taking back from Beijing, the people are pushers when it comes to selling. Also a very strange phenomenon I experienced, people randomly taking pictures of me or asking me to be part of a picture with them. Maybe I look like a superstar, lol , who knows ? But I quickly realized that it was not the case, when  someone took my picture with out asking me and I went to ask them why , and they ran away, at another occasion I grabbed one of them and said : you take picture, you pay me ! The guys face went completely blue of fear, being that he must have been 5 ft 5 and me 6 ft 3 lol. Back to the visit, so after taking a lift to go up the mountain where the wall is laying, every one was in agreement that we would not be walking much as it all looked like an ever ending brick road, nothing wowing there besides the fact that it was built 1300 years BC . The way down, we had to go down a slide , which was the highlight of my day lol (took a video of me going down). Next we were off to the forbidden city, this one I did not visit the inside as it would take a whole day, so next time ! 

Click here for pictures : Beijing 

Cities I've visited