A few people asked me, “So is it hard to work up there?”. The best way to learn is to practice and work smart. You’re going to meet many different crews to work with, different passengers to attend to and different aircrafts to grow accustomed to. I will now share some experiences, after flying for only six months. I do have plenty of stories to share, the good, bad, funny, crazy, teeth crunching, almost-life-threatening and more to come. But I’ll share just one of the recent incident which happened in my flight, it was kind of scary, shocking but hilarious at the same time 🙂
January 2012, my first destination of the year was Paris! It was lovely, it was cold and I had good companies. Somewhere in the air, on our way home to Hong Kong, right after we completed the first meal service, I was putting things away and cleaning the galley when I heard the ISM (In-flight Service Manager) made a PA (Public Announcement) reminding all passengers that smoking is prohibited on board, and usually when the ISM made such an impromptu PA, it means that one of the cabin crews must have caught somebody smoking in the lavatory. Roughly about 40 minutes later, I was having my dinner and was helping myself to something to drink, when suddenly I saw the amber call light in the galley lit up, followed by a loud aural sound which indicates the smoke alarm in the lavatory had just went off. In a matter of seconds, I ran (not very graceful, I know) all the way to the back of the plane and found the lavatory with a lit up amber light button, which is located, right above the lavatory door. Knowing in my gut that this is something serious, I knocked on the door loudly, urging the passenger to open the door. I heard a reply from inside the toilet and shortly, the passenger opened the door and I see a thick could of smoke already filled up the whole lavatory and it set the smoking detector off. I said sternly to him, “Sir, you are not allowed to smoke!” He nodded his head and tried to take a step out of the lavatory to return to his seat, but I used both my palms to stop him from taking another step. I asked for his boarding pass and he gave me an opened box of cigarettes (which I declined), his passport and his boarding pass.
My colleague, Yulia, who was there on the scene kept an eye on the passenger as I went to the forward zone of the aircraft to look for the ISM. The ISM then took over the matter while Yulia and myself, quickly dug through the trash, as a precaution as some passenger may throw the cigarette bud in the trash and it may cause fire. In addition to that, the cigarette bud can be used as an evidence. We didn’t find anything apart from cigarette ashes on the sink and washed off cigarette ashes on the toilet bowl. The funny part was when I was cleaning the lavatory, I heart the Captain made a PA announcement, he sounded furious because he’s just found out that there were two smoking passengers in his flight and he said if he were to find another similar case, he would divert the plane to Moscow and have the passengers arrested and put into jail. It was sort of hilarious because the Captain is actually such a sweet old man, with a big goofy smile 🙂 and to hear him making such PA, it tickled my funny bone.
Upon arrival, around 8:00am, right after all passengers were off the plane, a team of policemen came on board to check on the affected lavatory and started taking notes and pictures as if it was a crime scene. I walked out the air bridge and saw the two passengers who were caught smoking being detained by the policemen. Basically I had to do a police report and stop by the office to type a detailed report to the company, fax the police report to the Cathay Pacific Safety Department, it was quite a lot of work that by the time I reached home around 5:00pm, I soul was probably floating in and out of my body 😛 12 hours flight plus extra time to file reports…funnnnn. But that’s just a part of being a cabin crew, you take on a big responsibility over your passengers.
To all the dreamers out there who are still trying, it will pay off soon! Feel free to ask me as many questions as you like and I will try my best to answer them, I am still considered a junior crew here in Cathay Pacific, but I can always try to source some answers. Last but not least, Happy 1st Anniversary Forum Pramugari, I hope to see you grow and expand bigger in the near future. This blog was my source of information and comfort. You have done a remarkable job for just the first year of this blog, Forum Pramugari! You don’t know how many people you’ve helped and inspired <3 Thank you for such a wonderful Blog!