3 AM… buzz… buzz…I pick up my phone to see who’s calling. Crew scheduling (or screw scheduling) as some of us flight attendants like to call it.
Today definitely feels like a screw scheduling kind of day because I only went to bed a couple hours ago.
I pick up.
“Hello, I am calling to reach flight attendant Freshwater.”
“This is her.”
“Hey, Danielle, I have a 3 day trip for you. It’s pairing #66169. Check in is 5:59 with a departure of 6:59 AM. It has a double Miami layover and you get back at 9:30 AM on wednesday, the 19th.”
“Okay…. thanks.” (Click)
And just like that, I’m off to fly. My bags already packed and ready to go. I carry them down 2 flights of stairs and drive 30 minutes to Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport.
My commute towards the nation’s capital is actually quite relaxing. I’m driving before all the traffic and before the inner loop closes for HOV. I drive right past Arlington cemetery and around the Pentagon. To the left, I can see the Washington Monument. All three brightly lit against the dark sky. Although I curse the early morning, I do remember to be thankful for this beautiful commute.
After I park, everything goes into fast forward. I’m on the crew bus, I’m going through security, checking in for my trip, greeting passengers, safety demo.
I finally relax when I hear the words, “flight attendants please prepare for take off.”
I secure myself into my jumpseat and a couple seconds later, we are rolling down the runway.
And finally, we’re in the air.
When I’m on call, this is how most of my trips begin. Little sleep, carrying heavy bags down the stairs, briskly walking through the airport to get checked in on time. All is worth it, once we take flight.