It is 4am: time for most of us to just keep snoozing…
– time for me to get up and start getting ready for my next trip to:
I proudly reach work early today and officially have time to work on my daily dose of goodness…caffeine! Recharged with a big cup of coffee and finished with all pre-flight duties we are ready to leave the desert and get into some fresh English air…
The flight is fully booked as usual and the brits are happily sipping on their Gin Tonics (which should be declared as UK’s national drink)….After the first service is finished I can see one of my crew struggling with tiredness. Obviously not all of us got their beauty sleep today…I approach one of the girls who seems fainting away whilst holding onto her trolley. Her voice is trembling and she appears very pale and dizzy. I immediately pull her aside and ask her to sit down for a moment while getting her some water to freshen up. She explains that in fact she did not manage to rest well before the flight and is very fatigued.
In the meantime a customer comes running to the galley pointing to the back of the aircraft where someone else seems to be emptying out his entire stomach. I quickly ask the head of our team to come and assist me with the exhausted crew in order to deal with the sick customer. When I reach the back of the aircraft I can barely recognize the way to the bathrooms. The area around my jumpseat is a carpet full of body fluids now and all my medical kits are to be found exactly there. The customer who just vomited all around the plane is looking at me with a satisfied smile claiming he is feeling sooo much better now..great -.-
And so I take a deep breath, put on my cabin crew smile and just do what I have to do…It takes me about 20min to clean and sanitize the entire area but once I am done I get a lot of compliments from our watching audience who is impressed by my braveness. One gentleman even approaches me asking how many kids I have at home since I seem to be very experienced with such ‘incidents’. I almost feel like telling him about some of my ‘babysitting duties’ onboard but luckily I maintain my professional image and just laugh at his joke 😏
The crew ends up ‘deadheading’ (which for non-flyers sounds much more dramatic than it actually is: traveling as passenger) for the rest of the flight. This leaves us with great logistical challenges to run the last service since we are now short of one crew member on a full flight and pretty much running out of time. Unfortunately our customers in the last rows of economy class will have to wait a little longer for their lunch today…As a result the call bell lights keep coming on and off and it starts looking a little bit like a discotheque in the back of the aircraft with all those blue ceiling lights vigorously flashing around.
I take all my courage to face the hungry crowd and apologize the best I can using my famous ‘flight attendant smile’ in order to win over even the most upset customers. Luckily they seem to understand the situation and are willing to wait for another few minutes to be served their meals; only one gentleman decides to stay angry. I offer him another glass of his favourite red -judging by the other two small bottles in front of him- in order to calm him down and start apologizing once again for the delayed service. The wine and my apologies do not seem to do their usual magic and so he starts pushing the attendant call bell over and over again loudly demanding for his food. Customers around him already start feeling a bit embarrassed by his behaviour and so I once again come to face ‘Mr. Grumpy’. Being very hungry and exhausted myself I take my last strength and tell him to please bear with my crew as they are all doing the best they can in order to serve him and all other customers around him as soon as possible. Looking at my pleading face he finally decides to stay quiet – mission accomplished.
I return to my onboard kitchen only to find another surprise waiting for me…all the customers from the front rows probably thought they would do me a huge favor in bringing their dirty trays to pile them up onto the galley floor -.- but I keep my cool and somehow manage to shove them all away into the non-existent space I create inside my tiny galley.
10 minutes later a loud and very cheerful voice starts announcing our descent into London. While the Captain is updating everyone with the latest information about the weather I am sweating around in my messy workplace struggling to sort out the space. I quickly peek into the cabin and immediately get an angry face back from Mr. Grumpy who is now waving with his tea cup demanding for a hot beverage. The crew is still running around trying to finish off the service in order to start securing the cabin and all of a sudden I receive an important call from the flight deck informing us about a shortcut. That leaves us with only a few more minutes to get the cabin ready before landing! Once again I manage to hide my panic reaction and casually answer with ‘no problem Captain. I will pass the checks as soon as possible.’ I quickly hang up the phone and advise everyone to secure and sit down immediately. With everything stowed away, the cabin secured and our immaculate looks back on it is probably close to a miracle that we manage to pass the checks on time.
And so my layover in the UK is really dedicated for one thing only….sleeeeeep💤