I was expecting to get out of Doha for a bit in order to refresh my sight a little so even though I only had turnarounds , I was with the spirits high specially after Rostering transformed what it was going to be 'shitty July' in something a little better.
So Athens here we go! it was still kind of funny to get ready for this flight as I've doing only layovers so I didn't have to pack my case with some spare clothes or my camera, just the little trolley bag and lots of energy as this turnaround takes four hours each way, plus one hour on Athens Airport.
Flight was really quiet, we took our little A320 over Saudi and Lebanon, nothing interesting to say I admit , passengers were mostly greeks traveling from some interesting place ( like Bali or Maldives) to their hometown. It was quite full yet really easygoing and the service was done easily.
As we were heading into Greece and minutes before landing you could see the beautiful Greek Islands landscape, watching in the broadcast map when were flying over nice places like Crete or Mikonos couldn't stop thinking on how nice it would have been down there with that blue ocean and those beautiful white houses and there I was, working on a bloody turnaround, so none of that for me ( at least for now ).
Landed into Athens with a beautiful weather that really got me even more dissapointed when we opened the door for the cleaners and we felt that pleasant summer afternoon breeze of the Mediterranean blowing inside.
Anyway, back to my reality: checks here , checks there and passengers boarding again.
There we were again, taking off with the Mediterranean Sea left behind and getting into the dusty Arabian night.
This flight was even more quiet as passengers were sleeping, we had a couple of honeymooners which catering provided with a 'wedding cake' and it was the highlight of the flight as when we gave them the cake , they wanted to take pictures with it and the crew.
Flight was easy indeed but extremely tiring and long , just got home crushed and slept until the next day at midday when I started my preparation for my second turnaround Cairo.
Yesterday was amazingly hot and widespread dust was incredibly heavy , so the weather was not helping with my mood. Got to the airport and there again, another turnaround.
Passengers boarded and most of them were already pissed ( don't ask me why , I don't know) and trying to fit their bags everywhere they could.
Ground Staff didn't help for this one as most of them were carrying amazingly big hand luggage which of course wouldn't fit, sometimes felt like I was on a tetris game trying to think logically which way to crush all the toys, duty free, souvenirs and bags they had, some of the passengers were even mad at me like I was the one who designed the planes , felt like saying "Mr. Airbus 320 designer gonna hear some heavy words from me when I meet them at Tolouse tomorrow, ok?"
After what I would call the heaviest boarding so far (I was sweating like hell when I finally got to fit all that luggage in the overhead bins) we departed in a heavy wind and dust storm.
I wish I could say that flight went well after that, passengers were really demanding and they were wanting to eat me alive when I said " Sorry Sir, I have no more lamb, would you like some chicken instead?" Why catering , Why????
Before landing into Cairo I could see a little of the Suez Channel and the egyptian desert but we landed at night , so not even a small sight of the pyramids.
One hour in Cairo for catering and cleaning and passengers boarding again, this time was a little better, a lot of them going to Doha ( first time I see that) and some connecting.
We had a nigerian football team on board, they were so funny and they were cool even though they finished our whole stock of sweets , beers and wanted to eat two meals on a three hour flight.
Never felt so happy to be back home , crew was really nice and we called ourselves ' suffering pals'.
Well, like they say ' not only of layovers the crew lives, sometimes we get the crap'.
Back online today and packing for Kathmandu again, I like that place and tomorrow I'm gonna explore more ( last time I was there, I was so tired that just went to a couple of places and slept).