Tag Archives: flight attendant

Punta Cana with nothing packed

My first trip of 2018 was one for the books… or one for my favorite book – my passport. I got a new stamp thanks to a huge storm in Philadelphia that was causing a declared “state of emergency” in the city.

I received a call at 8am and had two hours to get to the airport. I was supposed to head to Punta Cana & come right back… but after a long delay, a busy flight down, and a cancelled return, we got “stuck” spending the night at an all-inclusive resort. Because of the short notice (and the fact that I was not supposed to layover), I didn’t pack much. On my way out the door, I grabbed some joggers, my favorite Selena T-shirt, and my bikini “just in case.”

I had never seen the Dominican Republic, other than from an airplane window before. So, of course I had to make the most of my short time there.

I’ve mentioned my friend, K, in a previous post about fun times in San Juan, and as you remember, we love to defrost on a beach when winter comes. Between all the food, the perfect weather and clear water calling our names, we spent our layover thanking the Universe.

Sometimes storms work in your favor… and when they do, don’t worry about if you’re packed for it, just count your blessings & float away.

Thanks for stopping by… I’m going to go wash the sand off.


Cuba – Day 3: Old Havana (Photoshoot)

Cat was the perfect partner in crime. She was ready to have a full day dedicated to a photo shoot. 

After primping, we treated ourselves to a mojito (and the spectacular view from the grand garden) at Hotel Nacional, where we paid for wifi and checked in for our flight the next day.  As I mentioned before, the wifi was very unreliable & it was easy to to “disconnect” after checking in.  Besides, living in the moment is preferred in Cuba.


Once again, we booked Narki for the day & we headed to La Habana Vieja for some glamour shots. 

Sweaty and all, we wobbled through the cobble stone streets of La Habana Vieja in our stiletto heels, dresses, and full hair & make up.  We took turns shooting each other & soon, Narki, himself, became our official photographer, directing us & shooting on our phones. 

Walking down the streets in our fancy outfits & making heads turn, made us feel like superstars! At one point, I remember Cat saying, “These people wish they were living our photoshoot… or nah?!” Lol it was cute. 

 Not cocky, but confidently, we walked through the streets, spinning, laughing, dancing, holding hands, & interacting with the locals by waiving, blowing kisses, talking, posing & stopping to buy gifts.  

Later, we asked Narki to take us to the best place to watch the Sun set… he did not disappoint! 

At El Morro, we got the best view of our entire visit! We caught the sunset & snapped some great shots… we told Narki, that of our entire trip, this was his winning suggestion. 

I hope you enjoyed these photos… & I hope to see you in Cuba… soon! 

*Here are a few tips for visiting Cuba: 

1. Don’t be afraid. After experiencing this beautiful country, I must say, they seem very happy, welcoming & well balanced. Tourism is alive & well there. U.S. citizens are the only newbies. 

2.  U.S. tourist travel to Cuba remains prohibited. You must obtain a license from the Department of Treasury or your travel must fall into one of 12 categories of authorized travel listed here.

3.  Book your place through Airbnb. Hotels can be pricey in Cuba. Get the experience of living like a local, surrounded by locals! Click here to book where we stayed. 

4.  U.S. CARDS WILL NOT WORK THERE! Take enough cash to cover your entire stay. In fact, whatever you think you will spend, take $100-$200 “emergency cash” more than that. Trust me! *The Cuban government requires that travelers declare cash amounts over 5,000 USD. 

4.  The Government of Cuba charges a 10% fee for all U.S. dollar cash conversions.  This does not apply to electronic transactions or other currencies.  *We used Euros that we had from our travels to exchange there.  

5. Take lots of hand sanitizer! Other than the bar form, soap is hard to find.

6. Be ready to be “disconnected.” Finding wifi is like finding a unicorn in Cuba. Enjoy the people around you & live in the moment! 

7. Have fun!!! Enjoy every minute of it! 

*Contact Narki (our taxi driver & photographer) by email: nankis@nauta.cu

*Cover photo/ Feature photo edited by Gustavo Gonzalez

Good Grieves 

I first met Benjamin “Grieves” Laub, at the SoundSet 2014 after party. We talked about music & life. I told him that I’m a flight attendant & blogger, and he expressed how much he’d like to share some stories with me. He gave me his contact information & asked me to follow up. I sent an email almost immediately, but never received a response. So, when I noticed him standing next to me at the Rhymesayers 20 celebration, I had to seize the moment. 

He greeted me very politely, after speaking with Photographer, Beth Saravo, who was standing beside me. I was also very polite with my greeting, & after introductions, I reminded him that we’d met before and I wanted to hear his in-flight experiences. 

I thought he was as going to ask me to email him again, but he didn’t. He took a deep breath and went into storytelling mode – something we all know this West Coast MC is very good at. 


Photo by Beth Saravo

He started with a flight to Denver, CO, a city I’ve come to love. He didn’t disclose which airline he was flying on, but he did disclose the shameless details. A female flight attendant wanted to go above and beyond customer service standards, when she offered (or insisted that he let her give him) a ride home… a little “extra” was definitely insinuated. I can only imagine… 

Another incident he recalls was a recent flight. The destination wasn’t disclosed, but his neighboring passenger was someone he’d never forget. 

“Throughout the flight this guy was complaining about how impatient everyone was. He kept saying how everyone was in such a rush. I just let it slide & didn’t say anything. Then, after landing,  (when the seatbelt sign is turned off), you know how everyone stands up?  People behind him were already in the aisle and he got all mad and yelled, ‘Oh yeah, like it’d kill ya to wait, huh?’

I didn’t say it, but I was like, “Um, You’re the only impatient one here.” ” 

I was impressed by his ability to spot someone who was clearly deflecting. Not everyone can do that & put their frustration aside, in those kind of situations. But, that wasn’t even the most impressive story. 

One time, upon landing, Grieves was sitting next to a young woman who wasn’t feeling well. She seemed very nervous & looked like she was about to be sick. His suspicions came to fruition when the lady began vomitting… In his direction!  He was sitting in the window seat, the woman in the middle, with someone to her left, in the aisle seat. Grieves was the unlucky victim of her aim.  

My first, and instant reaction, was ‘Oh f%^*#!’ But, when I looked at her, she said, “I’m so sorry. I’m pregnant. This happens.”

It was I one of those total human moments and I couldn’t be mad. I looked at her, wearing a thin top, covered in vomit & I took off my button down shirt,  to let her use it to cover herself and get off the plane. She was already so embarrassed, I didn’t want her to feel worse.”

I was so moved by how cool Grieves was in such an uncomfortable position. I see and work with passengers all the time. Not everyone is this calm & collected. Bravo, Ben! 


Photo by Beth Saravo

Grieves also admitted to me that he only uses social media to talk about good airline experiences. He likes to keep his rants private. We discussed the “power of the corporate letter,” and he promised to write something about the next flight attendant he encounters who goes above and beyond. Maybe my colleagues will catch him on their flights! 

As we approach a busy week with holiday flyers, I hope everyone keeps this post in mind.  Be like Ben, ya’ll! 


Photo by Beth Saravo

I’d like to thank Benjamin Laub, for sharing these stories with me and for making my night so special. You’re a good guy, Grieves. I hope to catch you in the friendly skies soon. Cheers!  

For up-to-date information, head to GrievesMusic.com and Rhymesayers.com/Grieves 

Photo by Beth Saravo

*Special thanks to the amazing Beth Saravo, for collaborating with me on this post & providing her masterpieces.  I look forward to working with you again! 
Check out more of Beth’s photos on BethSaravo.com

The Queen Mary

As I mentioned in my last post, one of my recent domestic trips took me LAX.  I had the chance to stay on The Queen Mary in Long Beach & I can’t believe I waited so long to share this post with you.  But, since we’re just leaving Halloween season & since today is Friday the 13th, here’s my story about my stay on the famous haunted ship. 

I landed pretty late at night & was ready to head straight to bed.  I definitely noticed an eerie feeling upon my arrival.  When I got into my room, my initial excitement turned to wonder… & a bit of fear.  I mean this place is known for ghost sightings!  I remember sleeping with the lights & tv on that night. This isn’t uncommon for me, in my states of exhaustion, but this time, it was on purpose.  

I wanted to sleep in a bit, since I’d be working all night, as my returning flight was a redeye.  I wanted to explore the ship & take in as much as I could.  Here are some shots from my 3 hour, audio-guided walking tour.  


The view from my room.


The longest hallway on board. If you stand at one end, people seem to disappear as they approach the opposite end.



You can find stories like this posted all around the ship.


A bit of history: The original office for the Travel Bureau, from the Queen’s active days at sea.


This is the view you get while entering or exiting the lobby.

 In these next photos, you’ll see shots from the upper & lower decks, as well as some of the control rooms.  It was really cool seeing some of the behind the scenes stuff.  


Radio Control and Communication room.


A look into where the Captain of the ship used to stay.


Walking through the control room all alone, was kind of scary…


One of the most haunting places I stood on the ship. This room is the lowest point on the ship & the propeller is actually under water.


I captured this shot at the end of my tour, before dinner.

After a delicious dinner on the upper deck, and a beautiful California sunset, I headed to my room to get ready for my flight.    
Thanks for checking out this post. I hope you enjoyed it! 
*Remember, for more up-to-date stories, you can add me on SnapChat: CcTheStar. 

For live feed coverage, follow me on Periscope: @StartingAt30

Sips, Stories & Selfie Sticks 

Yesterday I returned from another amazing Barcelona trip.  I was flying with one of the recruiters who hired me.  We spent the day on a gay (nude) beach.  It was awesome! 

Note: I haven’t taken the plunge & gone fully nude on the beach, yet, but I love being topless & people watching! 😜


Tuna is life-changing in Spain… here’s a shot of my delicious lunch – my crew member’s treat. In flight attendant life, sometimes senior crew members take us newbies out & show us a wonderful time on their dollar. It’s such a great perk of the job and I look forward to the day that I’m in that position.

We made friends with the guys next us after jumping in on their conversation.  They were travelers from Tijuana & Los Angeles – my neighbors in San Diego.  The guys had beautiful smiles, beaming personalities, fun stories & a full itinerary of travels ahead. 

We decided we needed a group picture. Alex said he had a selfie stick, and heres the first of many shots. Roberto might be joining our flight crew someday soon. Bob was recruiting…

We couldn’t help but bond & be entertained by the transgender (in transition) woman on the opposite side of us.  She seemed to know everyone on the beach and she kept insisting she was “leaving after this drink.”  She left around 8:30pm… 

Anyway, after bathing in the sun & the Mediterranean Sea, we were all hungry.  We changed & met at one of my favorite pinchos spots, Bilbao Berria.  Our party had grown & wine was flowing.  It was a lovely evening with new friends. 

After such a night and working an eight hour flight, I got a group text from my friends in Philadelphia. They were heading to Center City Sips & even though I needed a nap, I was going to join them. 

After a quick costume change, I hop on the metro to meet my crew.  My final destination, a beer garden/al fresco dance party surrounded by tall buildings in the city.  My friends hand me a drink as soon as I walk in & we hit the dance floor.  

It came as no surprise to me that there were fellow flight attendants lingering in the crowd.  It’s always fun when were together.  We play catch up & our conversations sound ridiculous… 

“I’m beat. I just got in from Barcelona.”

“Tell me about it, I just got in from Amsterdam and I have Lisbon tomorrow.”  

“Where’s (insert name)?”

“Oh, he/she got called to Tel Aviv…” 

Lol… We sound ridiculous & I love it!  


Here’s a shot of some of us… some flight attendants, some just Philadelphia friends. Eduardo is like 6’6″ & with friends that tall, you don’t need a selfie stick!

We danced & drank & enjoyed the perfect weather.  After a beer garden, a historic bar & $1 tacos, I was exhausted.  I had to call it a night. 

I just wanted to share this quick post with you to say that I am so grateful for my life and the wonderful people I get to go out & play with.  I’ve been so busy living, that I haven’t taken much time to write.  I need to work on that… 

This morning, I woke up with a smile on my face as I reflected on the past few days, and I wanted to put something in writing.  Here it is & I hope you enjoyed it.  

For more up-to-date stories, follow me on Snapchat: CcTheStar 😘

Carnevale in Venice

After much self-inflicted internal debate, my flight attendant friend, Ali, and I decided to chase Carnevale in Venice. We had the same days off & needed to ditch the upcoming snow storm in Philadelphia. Italy was a dream.
After a few days working, we were both exhausted & didn’t know if we wanted to put in the “effort” to go to Italy. Luckily, our intuition (& my roommate, Courtney) spoke up.
We were suddenly reminded that we should “not be lazy” or “settle for the easy way out.” We should seize the moment & fly to JFK, to Milan, catch the train, & to the boat, to Venice to celebrate Fat Tuesday.
The idea clicked like a lightbulb & we were off. Escaping the snow storm for 50 something degree weather & delicious pasta was a no-brainier. We were excited!  

The flight to Milan brought about new flight attendant friends. They took care of us & invited us out. This is pretty common among flight crew. We really do stick together.
It took about 13 hours of actual travel time… 2 planes, 2 trains, a bus & a boat. 

 After a long day of travel, we finally made it to our hotel – which we booked at a Mc Donald’s cafè, thanks to wifi and Booking.com

 We each indulged in a long, hot shower, got primped & dressed, and stepped out for the night.
What I must say is that, in this case, the journey was truly more important than the destination. We made friends with our fellow flight crew on the way over. We met the most amazing young woman on the train from Milan to Venice who talked to us about everything from growing up in Europe, to education, to politics, to young love & so much more…she even shared her mother’s homemade, & Venetian trademark, tramezzini sandwich with us. All of these people fed us, loved us, made feel right at home, and engaged us in the stimulating conversations.
We made the trek to the car-less city to partake in the largest Carnevale celebration on the continent… & when we arrived at Saint Mark’s square, we had a real-life “womp womp” moment. The ground was covered in confetti & the crowd was clearing out. We missed the festivities that we’d traveled so far to see… 

 It was ok, though. After the experience we’d had to this point, we were optimistic… We knew there’d be plenty of after-parties. So, we walked the winding roads & stopped for some of the best spaghetti bolognese I’ve had in my life. Maybe it was the best… or maybe I was famished from our busy day.
We stumbled on the cutest local bar – Devil’s Forrest Pub – where the bartenders seemed to love us. They gave us free drinks & beads all night. They even took shots with us. 

They also pointed us in the direction of the biggest party of the night, “Arsenal.”
After what felt like a journey through The Labyrinth, we finally made it to a long, straight path along the water. The path lead to a historic-looking warehouse that was in the distance. 

This is when I turned to Ali with my fear… Maybe we were being lead to the large, annual feeding of local vampires. Maybe this was the part where all of us unsuspecting fools were fed to the blood-thirsty beasts…. But, man, what a way to go!
We continued on until we made it the huge night market/rave. With food, drinks & multiple rooms of music & flashing lights, we joined the masked & costumed guests on the dance floor. We did Arsenal! 

 Needless to say, we were absolutely exhausted after our big day. When we decided to leave the party, we discovered a water taxi that would save us about an hour of walking (that is if we could find our way back). Side note: Venice is a city with no cars, which means no cabs to drop you off… We hopped on the boat & got off at the stop that we thought was the closest to our hotel.
We wanted to get a good night’s sleep, so we could take advantage of a full day in Milan. It was a nice concept, anyway. A few hours would have to suffice.
In the morning, we enjoyed our free, breakfast at our hotel. The sun was shining, the day was gorgeous, and our view was overlooking the Grand Canal. Boats & gondolas rode by us as we enjoyed the most important meal of the day. 

 We prepped for the day & started our voyage back to Milan… or, at least we thought. We ended up running into some of the crew members from our flight, & joined them for drinks & (inevitably) lunch along the water. We knew it would be a voyage back to Milan, & we couldn’t do it on an empty stomach… Spaghetti bolognese was definitely in order. 

 After soaking up the sun, we took the boat, to the bus, that would take us to the train, to get to Milan. We met with a couple other flight attendants from our flight for dinner. We’re all pretty new to the industry. We had a lot in common & a lot of stories to tell. It was nice getting to know each other.
Although I wish the night could’ve gone on forever, and we could’ve seen more of Milan, time was a factor. We needed sleep & we needed to catch our flight home in the morning… A shuttle to the airport, then two plane rides would have us back home in Philadelphia.
Four days to travel to Europe & back may seem crazy to most people, but to us, it was normal. “No time wasted,” is often our motto. So, when we have days off, we make the most of it… Do you?

Thanks for reading along, everyone. I hope you enjoyed this post. How do you spend your days off? Have you ever taken a spontaneous trip? 

 *Special Thanks to Alyssa Muckey for assistance with photos. Also to my bestie, An Dyer , for her ongoing love & support of my life, my blog & my dreams!

Starting At 31…?

I wrote this post over a month ago and just stumbled upon it… I was hesitating posting it, but here it is… Hope it explains some stuff, hope you enjoy it…

As you all know, this blog is my documentation of me “Starting At 30…” With a new career, new city, new life, etc. I must say, this past year has been a roller coaster ride. It wasn’t easy, and at times it was pretty scary, but it was all worth it. With all the lows, also came the highest of highs. This has been one of my most difficult years financially, and at the same time, the richest one when it comes to experience.
I promised you in my first entry that I’d be honest & share the “not so glamorous” side of flying… Well, because of how busy I’ve been, I’ve really only focused on fun times… I mean, who doesn’t want to focus on the positive stuff?
Well, let me recap a little:
On my 30th birthday, I went home for a little over a week. I visited friends & family all up & down California. I was showered with love & gifts & delicious food. I had three birthday celebrations in San Francisco, Los Angeles, and San Diego. I saw so many loved ones and even visited my place of birth (and family there) for the first time in over 20 years! This took place during my beautiful drive down California’s famous Highway 1.
When I returned to Philadelphia, the weather was cold & I was about to experience my first east coast winter (cue suspenseful music). Living with four roommates was about to be a bit of a challenge. We were all going to be home more often, as flying demands slowed. It felt like a reality show. You know…when people stop being polite & start getting real…?! There were good times… and… there was drama. Five personalities from different walks of life in one house during (what’s been said to be) the worst winter in I dunno… ever, put us all to the test… I’ll just leave it at that…
For the first time in my life, I had to work on Thanksgiving. Working at a bank for the past 10 years, I was guaranteed to have holidays off… But, working in the airline industry meant that I got the chance to get people home to their families for the holiday… Not just any people, either. My flight consisted of military men & women who were coming home for the first time in years, after being deployed. It was the most rewarding day on the job to date. I look forward to working the holidays this year.
Once I made it through the brutal winter and all the snow storms, I joined the Spanish-speaking program with the airline. When spring rolled around, I’d only be assigned to fly to Puerto Rico, Madrid & Barcelona. The first day that I had to make Spanish announcements, I was so nervous. I only read from our handbook, word for word. I was terrified when the captain made announcements & I was put on the spot. Now, the (extended) season is coming to and end & I can read my English book & translate the words in my head. I’m proud of how much my Spanish has improved & how confident I’ve become.
Working transatlantic trips opened so many doors for me. I was able to pick up other European destinations from senior flight attendants who met me along the way. This summer was the best summer of my life! I’ve seen some of the most beautiful places & been to some wonderful concerts. Like the time I went to Paris, got paid overtime, got into a show for free & was assigned a hotel room with a view of the Eiffel Tower. I mean, that’s like every girl’s dream, right? Right… Then, I came home to Philadelphia & had to set up a mouse trap…& when it did it’s job, I had to do away with the fury casualty myself. I’m telling you, people… Highest highs & lowest lows.
It wasn’t only Paris, though. This year I’ve also seen Italy, Scotland, England, Ireland and so many other breathtaking places (some of them are still pending blog posts). I’ve been so busy living life & exploring that I haven’t dedicated my time to writing like I’d really like to. It’s not a bad thing, it’s not a good thing… It’s just the way it is.
I have some wonderful posts sitting in my drafts, waiting to be published. I have amazing pictures that I can’t wait for you to see… And most of all, I have so many life experiences that I want to share with you…


Stay tuned…!!