Perhaps it was the Oktoberfest beer at the bar during my layover in Houston. Or maybe it’s the Eddy’s grapefruit vodka and soda I’m sipping on thanks to my pilot handing me a drink coupon last night at the bar while celebrating the end of another rotation together. But here I am feeling grateful AF.
I’m at or above 30,000 feet right now as this has become the norm in my life. I’m a flight attendant on private jets currently airlining home to Charleston after 19 days on the road, er, in the air.
I was ‘approached’ on Instagram a little over a year and a half ago. ‘Wanna get paid to travel the world in a private jet?’ In the famous words of my late mother, ‘does fuck go with yes?’ OF COURSE! Traveling has always been at the top of my to-do list above finding a boyfriend and budgeting my money. I’ve mastered the art of packing 15 days worth of clothes to accommodate any climate in a carry-on. (The trick is to roll everything doobie tight and all black everything!) I’ve conditioned myself to fall asleep as soon as my head hits the pillow or my ass hits the middle seat. And I know what my healthier options are at pilot-coveted BBQ joints.
I went to SkyAngels SkyAcademy mid-June 2017 paid for with the help of several supportive friends wanting to see the better version of Rachel Fucking Canada. I felt like the black sheep of my small class amongst my ‘Sister Angels’. At the time, I had a bleached blonde pixie hair cut and struggled to cover the tattoos that coat my arms. I constantly felt like I didn’t fully understand the jargon and lingo used in the world of aviation. Dispatch. Brokers. Lead Pax. PIC. SIC. FA. And don’t get me started on airport codes! And what do you mean I’d be flying retired NBA stars!? (Listen, people of wealth are just like us; they shit after their morning coffee, too.)
But this didn’t happen overnight. In fact, I didn’t think it would happen at all. I would be asked by my California besties, ‘How’s the flying going? Anything yet?’ I felt so guilty and ashamed. I was trying so hard! I would email my resumé and follow up relentlessly almost to the point of pestering. I made it a ritual to email every week, ‘Happy Monday! I’m available for any pop up trips this week!’ Never a response. As a result, I let my resumé routine fall by the wayside. Maybe it wasn’t meant to be.
One particular Monday, I got a phone call from a number I didn’t recognize. SENT TO VOICEMAIL. ‘Hi Rachel. This is Katie with (well, that’s none of
your beeswax right now). I came across your resumé and would love to set up a phone interview.’ What?! How did she get my resume? I’ve never heard of this company. I set up the interview for the next day. Had a second interview with the COO Wednesday morning and had a new career Wednesday just in time for a happy hour celebration.
My resumé had been passed along by a Sister Angel, one I’ve still yet to meet but owe so much
to! I’m grateful for her every day I get to step onboard a Bombardier Challenger and for the tight knit sisterhood I’ve acquired by being a SkyAngel.
I have a lot of ‘me’ time while on rotation. My skin is glowy from all of the face masks I apply while binge watching garbage cable TV in my hotel room. I’ve had time to write letters to loved ones. (Like actual pen to paper letters!) And most importantly, I’ve had time to reflect.
I’ve reflected on where I was a year ago. The restaurant I was working at had closed down and I took on three jobs! I barely had a handle of my social life or my finances as I was depending on tips. (#tipthebill, people!) And, I was lonely. I wouldn’t say I’m out of the woods yet on the loneliness but I’m getting better. Sometimes, I wish I had a special someone to text at night to share my day with but that’s what my girl friends are for! And with WiFi at 10,000 feet, there’s no reason I can’t text them to catch up.
This new career path has also paved the way for me and my bio-dad to have a newfound relationship. He was one of the eight original test pilots of the Black Hawk helicopters. Crazy? Fearless? One of eight dumbasses? Probably yes to all but he was a pilot of many helicopters and fixed-wings and now we have something to talk about over margarita’s at his favorite watering hole when I’m in his neck of the woods. I’m grateful to have a second chance with him.
I always say The Universe is my homegirl. She really is. I manifested the fuck out of this lifestyle and she handed it to me on a silver platter. She rolled out the red carpet and gave me an encouraging slap on the ass as I headed toward my dream. For that, I am grateful.
The Universe is your biggest cheerleader. Want something? Talk it out with The Universe before you go to bed. Thank her for a day on this side of the ground every morning. Show GRATITUDE for the gifts you were given today. In detail, tell her what you want for your life. Do this regularly and I PROMISE she’ll give you exactly what you want. Don’t believe me? Scroll to the top and reread this post.
Perhaps next I’ll manifest a boyfriend.