You step out of the airplane and into Terminal 4 at John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York City. Your freshly manicured fingernails smooth the creases out of the uniform that you mercilessly ironed the night before. You think that, quite possibly, every single person in the airport is staring at you. So you straighten your shoulders and march toward the AirTrain, because it is imperative that you hurry to your hotel room so you can sit and stare out the window.
Flight Attendant Orientation begins tomorrow morning. You just spent 8 weeks in training, and you are eager to put all of the skills that you mastered to the test. Plus your new hairspray smells delicious.
Your very first working flight is in two days. A quick trip from New York to Miami and back. As you hurry to your first crew briefing, you proudly tell the flight leader that this is your very first flight ever. He smiles, but inwardly groans to himself. You happily march through the airport and down the jetbridge to the airplane of dreams that will carry you off the half-frozen New York City ground and into the clear blue skies.
The first passenger to hobble aboard is a 75-year-old Jewish woman wearing approximately an entire bottle of Chanel No. 5. She stuffs the garbage that contains the remains of her airport breakfast into your face, and grunts out the word “blanket” as she slowly makes her way to her seat. Your pleasant, lipstick-caked smile freezes to your face.
Did I shave my legs for this?