Saturday, September 29, 2007

Three down!

Hey, everyone!!!! I can’t believe it is the end of week three. Over half way there. So much has happened this past week. My training flight was wonderful. There were three of us on my flight (trainees) and we all got to work. It was really cool. Our team went to Denver (which is cool since that will be my domicile). My class was all over the country that day!! At the Chicago airport we got to use our United employee privileges and go thru employee security, we were able to go down to the domicile at the airport and on the way to the plane for our pre-flight briefing, we got stuck in the elevator!!!! It was kind of crazy. The inside doors opened but the outside ones wouldn’t. We weren’t able to go anywhere for a few minutes. Needless to say, when we finally got back downstairs to the domicile we took the escalator! Working the flight was interesting, there was an FAA agent on board (of all things to have on our first flight, but we were in compliance so there were no worries – yeah, right!!) and the flight attendants were kind of lazy. In the pre-flight safety checks I was following a particular F/A and she looked a little awkward with her FAOM (F/A Operations Manual) and she said she doesn’t usually use it, but of course had to with the FAA on board. Wow! That’s reassuring! Don’t worry, I will perform all of my safety checks by the book – you’ll be very safe. We had a delay in Denver because of mechanical problems on the plane arriving in Denver from LaGuardia that we would be taking back to Chicago. Fortunately they stopped in Chicago and picked up a new plane before coming to Denver. On the return flight, the pilot got real involved with us and had us in the cockpit and he showed us a lot of emergency stuff. He told us to visit during the flight. Well, we were waiting for someone to tell us when to go and we didn’t get it, so we figured it didn’t work out, but when we were walking off the plane the pilot said he thought we were going to come visit the cockpit during the flight, I told him we were waiting for an invitation and he said we had had it. Damn! That’d been cool! I’ll have many opportunities, because there is a two person rule for the cockpit meaning there always has to be two people in it, so when the pilot or First Officer has to go to the bathroom, a F/A has to sit in there! I’ll take my turn.
Okay, other than the trip it has been lecture after lecture although we did have our wide body fams at the hangar on Thursday. We went on a 777, Airbus A320, and the 747 again, but this time it was thorough. We took more pics, so I will post some when I get some. We had fun. When we got back, though, our instructors told us they were going to meet with us for a few minutes in the classroom; however, it was at the request of one of our other instructors, Reuben. He wanted to address our class. Our class is down to 36 people and we’re split into 2 groups, 1-22 and 23-36. The 23-36 class is very vocal and like to sing and joke and laugh and party. Our side seems to be much quieter and laid back. Anyhow, the day before (Wed), all of us had had Reuben for our widebody classroom and no one ended up happy. In the other class I think they were asking unrelated questions and being their exuberant selves and our half was trying to learn and had a problem with his teaching technique… Not only did he call everyone the weakest link if we gave a wrong answer, but he wouldn’t help us find the answer to a question in our packet that may or may not have been in our FAOM. Anyhow, more to the point, he was apparently unhappy with our reaction to him and with the other half of the class and reported several people to Chad, our supervisor. The meeting he had with us was to tell us as a group that he had never done this before and that he thought we were an excellent group and there were several of us he wished he could pin our wings on us and put us on the line right away, and yet it only takes one bad apple to make the whole group look bad. Anyhow, it went on and on. Today, we had our practical exam for PA & Demo and our suprv. called a few people aside that Reuben had named (4 from my class) and gathered the info. Apparently, he was unaware of the ‘meeting’ that was called by Reuben and the fact that he called people the weakest links. Chad called a team meeting this evening after class and we discussed everything. Who said drama was for soap opera’s only????
I don’t know the point of telling you all that, but I guess I just wanted to share how my life is here at United’s training facility. I do what I am supposed to do and I try to avoid confrontation, because as a F/A we are going to ‘meet difficult customers’ and may not always like our co-workers, but we will have to be able to deal with it. Catch 22.
On a good note, Quiz 2 was Thursday morning and I got a 100%!! And I passed the PA & Demo with flying colors!!!
TK (Emergency training) starts Monday (we have to be waiting for the bus at 5:45) and will go into the middle of the next week. This is going to be fun, but stressfull. Wish me luck!

1 comment:

Barbara said...

So, did the 4 in your group get into trouble? The whole thing sounds like any other business, and there are always "bad apples". I knew you would do well.
When is graduation? I saw an ad for cheap flights from Atlanta to Chicago so...I just need to know if I would be able to see you and spend any time with you if I come. Like, could you spend the night with me? I would need to find a motel close to the airport.
Just a thought.
Flo is in a nursing home in Hattiesburg and I am going to Petal to pick up things of hers she wants me to have and I think I will just drive to Mandeville and then do what I have to from there. That would mean I would get to see Mel and Mike and Rock.
I would love that.
I love you and hope you are finding joy in the training and having the time of your life. It won't be long and it will be the real thing.
I love you,
Mom