Happy BA-nniversary to me

4 Mar

HOW HAS IT ACTUALLY BEEN A YEAR ALREADY. I still feel new and  inexperienced, but also constantly  jet lagged and like I’ve aged by 7 years.

Sat in Aguas Calientes in Peru last month, I was refreshing my work roster ferociously to find out what February would have in store for me to mark this momentous occasion. It was genuinely one of my best rosters yet!

 

First up was Shanghai. So if this was any other day of the year, I would be absolutely stoked to head out to China to explore. Disappointingly, this trip came just after my return from South America meaning my body clock was royally messed up and a 12 hour flight to Asia was the last thing on my list of things to do on my return to the UK. So I stayed in my bedroom for 3 days straight. That is all I did. Snoozy Suzie.

Thankfully next was a standby block which I spent with my lovely training mate Anka. It provided me with a little time to chill out before I was rudely awoken from my afternoon nap with the news I was heading to Tel Aviv that evening. Moreover, I was positioning out! Every crew member LOVES seeing that word on their roster. Being paid to travel as a passenger is dreamy. Not so great however, when you position in Economy. In a middle seat. With Israelis arguing over which hat is their. Cheers BA. Tel Aviv was a bit dull and a bit chilly and over all pretty uninspiring. Comfy beds though. At least I was coming home to a dinner party with Annabel & Coxy and then some bday celebrations for James!

 

Finally scheduling were also sending me back to Nairobi. Having bid for it a few months back, but ending up there during the elections, we were under strict instruction not to leave the hotel, meaning I couldn’t see the animals I had hoped to. It was also the trip of the massive RAF, Etihad, BA room party. This time, not only was I lucky enough to be going during a time of political peace, but it was also with my team! On Mixed Fleet, unlike other BA fleets, you are enrolled within a team under a manager, and sometimes you are fortunate and placed in a team with some of your training mates. Sammy, Natalie, Kirsty, Anka and I all started with BA over a year ago together, and along with our legendary manager we were all en route to Kenya. After an accidental all nighter with copious amounts of crew purchase, some over-generous flight crew, and falling asleep at the table as the sun rose over the game reserve outside our hotel, I went to meet the rest of the crew in reception for our excursion to the elephant orphanage and giraffe sanctuary – still drunk. The hangover hit early afternoon and the flight home wasn’t fun, but one of my favourite trips yet, hands down.

I only had a day’s recovery at home which was mostly spent on the online learning portal as unfortunately a BA-nniversary also comes with the bad news that recurrent is looming. All cabin and flight crew are re-examined yearly on SEP, medical and company procedures to keep us up to date and trained to the best standards possible. It’s always been a daunting thought, especially because you’re chucked into a random group of people of all aged from all fleets and ranks, but it was honestly a great experience. You come out feeling refreshed, full of knowledge, and ready to get back into that jumpseat.

 

One of my pals from recurrent, Hannah, was also on my Miami the next day. I worked upper deck with a new friend Kristin, and we smashed the club service. On a route which is notoriously hard work, I came off the aircraft feeling very positive. We went for a nice dinner in downtown Miami, and got up early the next day to visit the Wynwood Walls (a must see). Most crew head to the beach on a Miami, obviously. But with so much more to offer we thought we’d do something a little different. It’s an arty district with murals painted absolutely everywhere, even the stop signs were decorated. Something for the insta lovers for sure.

Kristin also rocked up to the briefing room for my next trip, Abuja. Now we all know just how much I hate Nigeria trips, but as this wasn’t Lagos, I was eager to be open minded about it. Turns out it’s probably worse than Lagos because it’s a night flight out meaning you get the rest of the next day and an evening there, and an early report the following day. So no time to drink! Plus I’m kinda missing that Lagos Irish bar. Pool is ok though and the staff cannot do enough to help look after us. I’m glad I’ve been but don’t wanna go back. Nice effort, Nigeria, but you’re not fooling me today! At least it was a nice few sectors for me to land in the flight deck. Still so thankful for these opportunities.

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