Sunday, May 31, 2009

-- Holidays are over! now feel the rush --

Today was my last day of training in a classroom, we headed to the main building in the early morning for a quick briefing on some missed details through the training and then headed to the airport for some briefings and check-in procedures.

That's it, got my updated roster with my 'Observer flights' ( or 'supply flights' if you want to) and everything starts tomorrow with a really nice overnight turnaround to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia (Dammam), where I'll be spending nice three hours inside the airport and then head back to Doha in the morning. This is my narrow-body aircraft flight as we are gonna be flying an A321.

My second flight is on a wide-body aircraft , an A330 which will be taking me to Dubai on a really quick turnaround ( something like one hour on ground before coming back to Doha).

Now it's getting real , it really feels like I've been living on Doha for years, since we've been going through a lot and specially getting a lot of information in a really short time.
So , after these flights I have my graduation on Thursday ( gonna get my 'wings') and then going to Dubai again for the ditching training on Friday.
Will try to keep all my readers updated.

See ya!

Saturday, May 30, 2009

-- Anesthesics are funny! for the first time... --

Second day-off in a row today and with the termometers now bursting some mild 47ºC in the city , you'd think I would be enjoying a nice beach or a nice Health Club swimming pool but...YOU'RE WRONG! Today actually I had my first ever surgery!

It all started like three days ago with a rash in my left upper arm, thought it was one of the hundred pimples you have in your life so I didn't notice anything different and just ignored...WRONG!, last night the pain and swell were so big that I had to go to the Emergency Room in the hospital and get it checked , specially because the pain was already spreading to the whole arm.
They told me it was an abcess so I would need to go back tomorrow and get surgery for them to remove all of it.

So there I was today in the morning, wearing a hospital robe ( the one that you feel like you are half-naked ) in front of the doctors in the O.R. and that was it , the next thing I remember was myself saying to one of my batchmates ( who kindly escorted me to the hospital and took care of everything) things like ' anesthesics are so cool , feel like drunk but without the nausea' or ' We... need.... water.... every... three....hours'.

Back home now and with my whole five senses fully recovered, it's really funny to remember everything that happened , specially due to the fact that my first ever surgery was held thousands miles away from home!

On the bright side, my training is...OVER! ,Thursday I finished my First Aid course ( meaning that now I am able to do the Heimlich Manouver and CPR properly ) and with that, I only have my observation flights left ( or suppy flights ).

Anyway , next week seems really cool, gonna start flying , going to Dubai on Friday for ditching and gonna get my 'wings'.

Monday, May 25, 2009

-- Fresh from the oven! my first ever monthly roster! --

Still excited about this! This is my last week of training and today we finally got the roster of the flights that we are gonna operate in June , as said before we bidded for them , so I am pretty happy about the result, as I got a lot of the flights I wanted!
So let's explain it in cristian words , as most of people in the world are not familiar with IATA three-letter codes:

My month starts with my ditching day in Dubai, UAE we are flying in the morning , then we are going to the Emirates Aviation College and we are coming back to Doha at night, then two days-off before I actually start my flights as a Cabin Crew.

Then I am gonna go out of these suffocating 46ºC in Doha to a cooler place: Stockholm, Sweden, where I'll be spending three wonderful days, any suggestions on what to do there?

Arriving from Stockholm, gonna have three days-off in Doha and then heading somewhere different: Dacca, Bangladesh , definetely didn't bid for this flight, although I really find it interesting to mix something from the 'Indian Subcontinent' in my June life, gonna be there for only two days.

Rostering thought that it would be enough rest for this new joiner, so decided to tight things up, one day later I have a long ( really long) flight to Casablanca, Morocco via Tripoli where I'll be spending only one day and then back to Doha where I will have minimum rest to put the uniform again and do a quick turnaround to Abu Dhabi, UAE.

Two days-off and enough time to recharge the batteries, because the next stop is the paradise better known as Male , Maldives where I have a layover for one ocean, white sand and of course ME ENJOYING IT!

Arriving from the beautiful beaches and again with minimum rest is time to get myself some chocolates and fondue as I head to Zurich , Switzerland for two days.

As the month is over, I'm doing a quick turnaround to Dammam, Saudi Arabia and again with minimum rest I'm flying to another of the world wonders: Beijing, China where I'll have two days-off and then back to Doha!

That's my June roster, again really happy with it's gonna be interesting to think about CPR and First Aid knowing that I'll be flying to these places!
See ya!!!! If I'm near your city , let me know!

Friday, May 22, 2009

-- So, that's the way the passengers are gonna see me? --

Really busy week the past one , lots of things to do! ( not really, just want to excuse myself for not have written in the past days ).
The week started with a really nice day-off , which I'd like to call ' housekeeping day' , because all I did was laundry , sleeping, cooking ( tried ), listening music, sleeping, cleaning my bedroom and putting some things together and sleeping again.
Then we had Dangerous Goods and Security where we learned how to deal with special situations inside the plane, so as I know so far, Cabin Crews are chefs, psicologysts, fire-fighters, and police mens...and always smiling! lol.

Next days were Grooming Days! not really much to talk about , as we men don't need too many grooming details and tips , kind of everyone knows how to take care of themselves and we don't need any tips on how to tie our long hairs or which kind of make-up to use.
Then they gave us the uniforms and suitcases! it's always cool to get free stuff ( no matter what )!

When I tried everything and looked myself in the mirror I must admit that it felt really weird and felt some butterflies in my stomach, for the first time since all my 'immediate-dream-of-working-for-an-airline' started , I idealized something but I never actually saw it materialized until that moment. So actually , that's the way the passengers are gonna see me everyday? does that means that I actually became a cabin crew? No more industrial design? No more 8-to-5 job? No more routine? Yes!

I only have one week left of training before I start flying, I do feel like it happened all too fast and now everything is getting real.
Anyway, haven't got my roster yet because they tried this new rostering automatic system this month so the rosters are taking a little longer to come out, still I keep checking my crew account every hour to see if I get lucky.

Just for the record: Hablo español, Falo português and Speak English.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

-- Cerquinga! ( Really close ) --

Done with SEP , had my final exam today and I couldn't be happier with the result, my training history have been really interesting so far, I am not the studying type person , sometimes I have a really big focusing problem ( specially if my Facebook homepage is around ), so my so-called grades around here have even amazed myself , specially because I just can't go through the books for long hours...starting to think that I might be a little smart ( Japanese family side coming out ).
So right now I can say that I've been safety certified to fly some of our aircrafts here in QR and now I am heading to the last part of training, which in some ways is easier than the part I already went through, now comes what really matters...GROOMING? hahaha , just kidding.

Have a day-off tomorrow ( good for a change ) and planning to finally head the Health Club they talk about so much , it is like 35 QR, about 10 US dollars, to spend the entire day there.
Running still looks interesting as these week temperatures got milder ( don't know why ) and we had a little sandstorm yesterday , I was intended to take some photos , but I forgot my camera at home.

Also new batches are arriving here in Doha , some people I already knew before they were coming , so it is really nice to talk to them, advise them and help them with the Qatari lifestyle peculiarities, so the past few days have been kind of busy for me as well ( yes, you could be the next one ).

Anyway, my roster is gonna be finally revealed on the 20th, like I said before can't wait to see where I will be heading to for the next month but as for now , I will only chill and enjoy the ride!

Hot and sandy greetings from Doha! ( Dawhah! )

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

-- Update ( because people are asking ) --

Is nice to see that people are enjoying reading about my happenings here in Doha , today is my One Month Anniversary here ( been here for a month ), since I have nothing REALLY interesting to share with my readers, I might as well say some random things:

- Finally bid for my flights for June , so now I will 'calmly' wait for my roster to come out ( yeah, right, probably will be counting the hours to get it ), bid some interesting non-cliche places, so let`s see what can I get.

-Today I went for a run in the blog-famous Al Corniche and finally after two weeks, we broke the record and got a nice 19m 11s ( the previous one was 19m 26s. Next goal is to get something less than 19 minutes.

-Yesterday after a long day of training and exams ( got a 100 per cent in my A320 SEP exams ) I arrived home , ate something and got online , suddenly my laptop just turned-off and wouldn`t turn on again, so now my internet resources are limited, will try to post anyway.

-Oh , found out that when two men are holding hands on the street here in Doha , it means that they are like really best friends and they would die for each other ( I first thought it was weird , so I needed to ask ).

Cheers from hot Doha , where right now is 22:30 hrs and is 32 degrees Celsius.

Friday, May 8, 2009

-- Not much to say ( It happens! ) --

Friday , day-off as usual, just woke up late and cooked something ( limited options , today: Mac and Cheese ).

Not much to say , so here is my update :

Last night I didn't have a good night , was feeling tired and sick because I ate a bad 'shawarma' before going out , so the night was kind of an endless pretending of ' I love dancing' followed by some moments of ' I am so gonna throw up now' and some ' I wanna go home' as well.

Good thing that my legs are better, they were really sore the past days , because I use to run periodically ( read the Super Cabin Crews rubbish a little down south of this page ) and forced my knees. Might go running today again, if the 40º C mark gets a little down at the end of the day.

'Plane school' as my friend would say, has been really funny the past days but also hard at the same time. A lot of info coming into my little brain, but nothing that a good large cup of black coffee and some food along with the books can't solve.

Also I couldn't be happier about the feedback I am having from my readers, I started this blog as a way to let my 'closest ones' to know what's happening with me, what are my experiences and wether if I'm enjoying or hating something ( that way I would save precious minutes in sending an e-mail to each one of them telling the same things ). Today I took a look at the visitors and noticed that people from over 90 different cities around the world have visited me, even from places I'd never thought I'd receive visitors e.g. Kenya, Brunei Darussalam, Japan. That's something I didn't expect before, so a big applause from me to you people! Keep it up!
As for me , back to my laundry, studying , maybe running and maybe a quick visit to the ' crew airport' because , I still haven't bid for my flights!

Have a nice weekend! mine's already gone! =D

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

-- Cabin Crew = Fire Fighter? Hell yeah! --

Waking up from a short 'siesta' right now and very hungry, at these kind of moments I would like to have my beloved mother or my beloved Alicia around to cook for me, since they are two continents and an ocean away , I have to figure out what to do now, order in? cook?

As the water boils ( already figured out what a cheap person like me would choose? ) , I 'll might as well drop a few lines here. In the early morning had my SEP exam, piece of cake, scored a clean 100 % obviously and then, just fun. Had a quick killer breakfast at the cafeteria ( two chicken burguers and a juice seemed healthy at the moment ) and then....FIRE DRILL!

And there we were, the crazy batch in the bus going across the plain green, humid and fertile valley on Qatar's landscape ( read a lot of sarcarsm here ) towards the Doha Industrial Area.
Should I mention again that it was bloody hot?

Middle of nowhere, a quick briefing, instructions and of course overalls!, astronauts , take your places!
Everyone inside the airplane mock-up and fight the fire! .It was really an experience , I never had to fight fire in my life before so it was really interesting to have the feeling because is really different to learn about fires, types of fires, smoke , etc in class and then actually feel the heat through the overall and feel the smoke getting into your breath.
Oh yeah , we are going back there tomorrow! Can't wait!...Until then, all I know is that...someone has a date!!!

( Not me , it's part of a joke from my batch, but some people might understand it as well )

Monday, May 4, 2009

-- Open Seat Belts, Come this way, Jump and Slide..--

First of all , must say that it is really nice to have a feedback from my readers and see that people are actually paying attention to what I am writing about, that really encourages me to keep on sharing with you my funny life and incidents. I had only two days a week for updating purposes but I am planning on adding a third frequency to the schedule , what do you think?
Talking about rosters, I am getting anxious as I have to bid for my June flights and get my first ever flight roster ( you know, with all the times, flights, etc. etc. )

QR has plenty of cool destinations , so I'll might as well look at the map and point some of them...or I'll go for the certain things : Beaches! ( leave european victorian style houses for later).

Still on SEP training, it was funny because the first days I found it really hard , classes and subjects were going really fast and sometimes it was hard to catch up , specially because English is not my mother tongue.
But I finally pictured the whole thing e.g. equipments and procedures, and everything is easier now ( grabbed this, twist here, hold there,check that). Tomorrow I'm gonna have the first exam which I am sure is gonna be just fine.

I am really enjoying here, mix 20 people from 16 nationalities in one training room and the result is always gonna be interesting , lot of cool names ( nicknames as well ), cultures, accents and way of looking at things, Virgin Atlantic's evil cigarettes are still wandering around our minds and dreams.

By the way , evacuation commands are funny when doing drills, but are something that I hope I'll never use along the next years.

Knowing that you are tired of reading the same thing I must say it again: It's bloody hot in here!
See ya!

Friday, May 1, 2009

-- Hot! Hot! ( and VS's evil cigarettes ) --

Hot is the common word for these past days, starting with the Arabic dessert weather who keeps increasing the temperatures everyday, today we reached 40ºC as did other major cities along this region ( Dubai , Abu Dhabi , Manama, Riyadh ), we are desperate looking for a swimming pool , which has become a really hard task considering we only have one day-off.

That day-off is also becoming really short, specially because this week we ended Cabin Services ( now I am the master of Bloody Mary´s in flight ) and started our long and hard SEP training.
SEP: Safety and Emergency Procedures, actually is not hard, the thing is that you have to memorize a lot of information and is not like you can 'say the info in another way' you have to learn it word by word , because these are internacional standard procedures.

I still find hilarious a video they showed us about fire on board the aircrafts, it was a really old video, like early 90's according to our UK friend, filmed with the help of Virgin Atlantic ( one airline from the UK ).
Special features for the man who couldn't stop smoking, who kept putting plastic cups above the smoke detector in the bathroom and was really nasty with the cabin crew.
The main features go to the evil cigarettes, who couldn't remain quiet and were always diving into the paper bins , creating a in-flight fire and the really special 'suspense-terror movie' soundtrack.

Last night we went to the Irish , had a great time again, it was one of our batchmate's birthday so almost all of the batch wanted to go out , including the southeast Asia wing! ( I call them that because they are always together and they are from countries like Malaysia, Thailand, Singapore , South Korea, etc. ).

Anyway , back to the real life...have to go study a lot today , so my day-off will be pretty short.
I still have 10 days to bid for the flights I want to operate for June, any suggestions?
Cheers from desertic Doha!