When I was a kid I used to dream of a white Christmas and as flight attendant, I guess I’ve experienced it all. Be it, green, blue or white christmas but no matter how far the distance I have travelled. I will still returned to a place called Home…
I flew to Manila on the 24th of December through a Boeing 777 aircraft as expected we landed earlier than scheduled arrival around 2:30pm but due to the traffic because of the Filmfest Parade that afternoon we’ve reach Diamond Hotel in Roxas Blvd. very late, passed 5pm already.
* These pictures are not yet uploaded in my website because it’s not yet high quality pictures (I just grabbed it from my Mom’s friendster account) I left my memory card back home, but will soon upload it…
I really enjoyed every moment, spent the whole time eating delicious home-cooked meals and sinful desserts! Then we gather around the tree to open our presents, Alma was the one hosting the gift giving while we were simply waiting for our names to be called. Our house is filled with laughter. Then later on made myself busy singing over the course of the evening while my cousins are enjoying their wine in the pool area.
The following day, I flew back to Doha with such a nice crew and supervisor. While my family and cousins flew to Hongkong via Philippine Airline to spent my mom’s birthday and New Year there. I guess that’s the main thing my family and I have in common, we all love to travel!
The capacity of the aircraft that we’ve used has 42 seats in Business Class and 293 seats in Economy but we only have less that a hundred passengers in economy + 5 person in Business class. Very light load! Who wants to travel during Christmas day anyway? Except for business travelers maybe like Ms. Pinky Aquino (Kris Aquino’s sister) is one of our passenger that time, she even gave a greeting card to all the crew and were very nice. After 9hrs travel time I’ve landed in Doha around 12:05 am of December 26, slept then same day pick to Manila again!
Even if my whole family is in Hongkong (Dec27) my friends didn’t make me feel alone. They pick me up in the hotel as soon as I arrived then went to Mall of Asia, ate in Don Henricos, had an ice cream dessert in White Hat, watch a movie then Starbucks afterwards. Really had a great time! Indeed a Happy day prelude to a New Year!
We only have 9 days OFF in Doha each month because most of the time we are out of country, all over the world or simply flying but it’s always good to know that at the end of the day, after a tiring flight you’ll go home to a clean and homey atmosphere so we’ve decided to makeover our flat. (Flat is the common term used for Flight Attendant accommodation here in Doha, just like buying a condo unit you have a choice whether Flat or Loft.)
We want to convert our boring spacious living room into a lively area and our common dining area to a special one but that will not happen overnight because we have to clean first, do some laundry, lots of vacuuming, then my favorite part “Shop” for home accessories, Christmas ornaments and a Christmas tree!
A beautiful, symmetrical tree is a perfectsymbol of the Christmas season. But simply by decorating it you’ll create a one-of-a-kind memory of the season…
* This is our ordinary and not so lively living room, we rearrange it and transfer one sofa to another location in the flat near our rooms.
* The Dining Table used to be there, now it’s our welcome/chill area since it’s directing towards the main door and that’s our little Christmas tree. It may not be as big like the ones back home in Manila but what’s more important is to feel the essence of Christmas… It’s the thought that counts! =)
The long day started at around 6:30 am pick up from our accommodation then went straight to the airport. Who would have thought that we would reach the triennial training knowing how homesick we are when we left NAIA 3 years back!?! But anyway, I had a great time to be with my batchmates again and Camille was also there – My closest friend here in Doha.
After a very quick flight, we arrived in Dubai where we were taken by bus to the Emirates Aviation College. The facilities inside were impressive. The ditching and evacuation training area also had a Boeing 777, Airbus A330 and Airbus A380 full size section mock ups to practice all the evacuation procedures.
Then we were given many scenarios and act as if we were really on the real situations like Thick Smoke in the Cabin, Emergency Landing on Water, Fire on the overhead bins, Fire inside the lavatory. (All drills can also be monitored in the LCD Screens.)
Next stage was to jump down the evacuation slides. All of us just evacuated quickly from one door, go down barefoot or with socks. The slides give off a lot of friction to slow you down at the end.
The final part was to crawl onto the large slide raft with our inflated life jackets on and practice assembling the canopy. Once we had done that, we had to drop into the (very cold) water and form into groups of six people so that we can stay together and stay warm. Although it was very cold in the pool, it would be fair to say that the mid-Atlantic would be a lot colder, so it was a valuable lesson to learn that forming a group in water were the most effective ways to keep warm.
We left the training center learning a lot about how to handle ourselves and the passengers in all of the various emergency situations, Fully qualified to be released into the real world of flying again!
Major airlines are required by law to provide flight attendants for the safety and security of the traveling public. Drill scenarios will provide crewmember with the opportunity to merge procedural knowledge with practical skills. Ability to successfully react to different fire situations will enhance level of confidence and to deal with fires in flight.
* While fighting a fire inside the lavatory mock-up. We have extra equipments to wear such as mask, Gloves, Glasses, have to carry a fire extinguisher and be calm as possible. Imagine if this is real situation!?! Probably, I’ll be the first one panicking! hehe!
* Next week, we’ll be going to Emirates Aviation Center in Dubai for another recurrent training about ditching and Slide/Raft inflation.
* Taken during our AB-Initio days when we joined the company 3 years ago. October 2006 (See all the photos here) 5 of my batch mates in this picture left already…
Technology has made life easier and comfortable. Not so long ago, we had to check the hotel front desk for faxes or use Internet in business centers. Those days are over because today’s electronic gadgets definitely make business travel more efficient. There are different models of mobile phones available with lots of features for the people to make use of it. Gadgets are indispensable part of traveling whether you are traveling for business, pleasure or both. Some of them are necessary to help you get out of trouble and some are for entertainment. Here’s a list of my travel gadgets which you musn’t miss when you’re heading to a layover:
Iphones serve as a best travel companion for me primarily because of built in WIFI but it wasn’t just useful in a mobile context, Back in the hotel I received an e-mail which required me to write a reasonably lengthy letter in this case laptop are better. Also have little iPod Nano and I find it better to bring on the gym rather than iPhone. . Another best travel companion would be a mini laptop or netbook because they are convenient and lightweight to bring and they are very useful for frequent fliers of the world. With the help of laptops and the Internet facilities life has become so easy.
Whenever I travel, I try to pack as lightly as possible so that I will have more free space for my shopped items. Despite this, there’s key items that cannot be left behind like power adapters, to get all of my items charged and because different countries have different voltage ratings. Another gadgets that is included in my list are another mobile phone from where my local sim (From Philippines) are inserted. Next is Tungsten T5 Palm (My handheld financial organizer) since 4th year High school! I’m used to its features and applications that’s why I can’t let go of it .
I was invited as a guest speaker at NCBA (National College of Business and Arts) for their 3rd-4th year HRM (Hotel & Restaurant Management) student with Tourism subject. The discussion firmly focuses on my travels to different countries, International Tourism, customer related information and life as a flight attendant.
My seminar only last 40-50 minutes but the question and answer portion made my stay longer. At first they were hesitant to ask, Later on they started calling Ma ‘am Star! Ma’am Star! Ma’am Star from each corner of mini theater room even some professors asked few questions too. It turns out to be a conference!
I actually had fun speaking in front of a crowd while sharing my stories and of course with pictures along with my stories because I’m not the type of person who keep telling things what they have but no evidence or proof at all (but words). I’m just laughing in my mind while listening every time I’m hearing stories such as I have this-that, Bought this at and there. haha! But I rather be quiet. I’m used to those kinds of personalities already. Oh come on, words are not even considered hard proof evidence in court hearings. The Judge may just condemn you right away. What I mean is, if you have it SHOW it. End of story. Not just by words. As the saying goes, puro kwento-walang kwenta! Again, I rather be quiet and let you boast your exaggerations and that’ll make me a good listener. Hehe!
After the Seminar, The College Dean personally thank me and told me that I should come back, etc. Then we proceed to HRM room to have lunch because they prepared lunch for us. After that went to Gateway Mall, then had a soothing massage at Blue Water Day Spa in Capitol Hills. The spa has a great ambiance and greenery view of a golf course, it’s like being away from the busy life of Metro Manila but it’s just actually in Quezon City near Celebrity Sports Club. (See Their Website)
I won’t summarize my speech anymore because it’s so long, but here’s my final message to them “Never get afraid of things which are achievable by you. Nothing is Impossible in this world. Many individual who’ve had a dream in their
childhood and succeeded in achieving those dreams has proved it. So I suggest we should aim and dream for a goal and try to succeed them without any laziness & losing control of ourselves. Let’s make every time worthwhile because Time is Gold!”
The Captain was 58, French. He/She entered Air France in 1988 and was qualified on the Airbus A330/A340 in February 2007. The Captain had 11,000 flying hours, which included 1,700 hours on the Airbus A330/340.
The 2 co-pilots were French. They were 37 and 32 years old. They started working for Air France in 1999 and 2004. They were qualified on the Airbus A330/340 in April 2002 and June 2008. The first co-pilot had 6,600 flying hours which included 2,600 hours on the Airbus A330/340. The second co-pilot had a total of 3,000 flying hours which included 800 hours on the Airbus A330/340.
The Chief Flight Attendant was French, 49, and entered Air France in 1985. The two other pursers were French, 54 and 46 years old and entered Air France in 1981 and 1989.
There were 6 stewards and stewardesses on board. 5 of them where French and 1 was Brazilian. They were between the ages of 24 and 44 years old and they started working for Air France between 1996 and 2007.
Air France identified the nationalities of the victims of flight 447:
61 French 58 Brazilians 26 Germans 9 Chinese 9 Italians 6 Swiss 5 British 5 Lebanese 4 Hungarians 3 Slovakian 3 Irish 3 Norwegians 2 Americans 2 Moroccans 2 Polish 2 Spanish 1 Argentinean 1 Austrian 1 Belgian 1 Canadian 1 Croatian 1 Dane 1 Dutch 1 Estonian 1 Filipino 1 Gambian 1 Icelandic 1 Romanian 1 Russian 1 Swedish 1 Turkish