It’s the first day of my standby month and I already get surprised with a trip to:
– Nairobi, Kenya –
Luckily, I received early notice so that I had enough time to prepare for my trip to Africa. The first thing I did was a trip to the pharmacy to get some mosquito spray in order to protect from the risk of Malaria, as advised by our company. With my bags packed and all prepared, I head to the airport for my next surprise: I will be operating in first class on this trip – whohoo great news – now I’m even more excited for the flight✈
With only 2 customers in the cabin, I have more than enough time to familiarize myself with all duties of a first class crew. The two gentlemen get welcomed in style with Arabic coffee and dates followed by a personalized ‘dine on demand’ service. I am very grateful for my amazing colleagues on this flight who helped me out and also entertained me with their great sense of humor, after all, it’s about having fun as well…and we definitely fulfilled that on this flight.
When we finally land into Africa I cannot wait to get out of the aircraft to breath in some fresh air…the traffic on our way to the hotel is pretty crazy -even at nighttime- and so it took us a while until we actually got there. After 12h of sleep I regain some energy for a morning workout in the gym. As a safety precaution, we are advised to remain in close vicinity of the hotel or stay in groups when walking around outside and so the only place I make it to on this layover is a nearby church.
The walk there was an adventure itself as I had to pass at least 4 different security barriers. Being the only white person out on the streets there honestly made me feel kind of uncomfortable at first. However, the moment I stepped into the church that feeling changed, as I got welcomed with such open friendliness and amazing gospel music. It made me realize that despite the fact that we might not share the same cultural background, ethnicity or traditions we all believe in something, which bonds us and makes us more similar than we think we are. And sometimes a simple smile, a friendly greeting or even a hug can go a long way and make a change. The atmosphere definitely had a huge impact on me and I was glad that I went out of my comfort zone.
Since I already explored the country during previous visits and numerous exotic safaris in the past – I highly recommend the Nairobi National Park – I actually enjoyed a little time off in order to rest up before my flight back home…stay tuned for my next blog!