July 08, 2008 - OZ 752 - Singapore to Seoul
Scheduled Time of Departure - 23:30 Seoul Time
(all times are in GMT+9 timezone)
21:30. Checked out from the hotel.
22:25. Preparing service items for the flight inside the plane.
23:05. Getting myself ready for boarding of passengers.
Over the PA system, the cabin manager announces we'll have delayed boarding by two hours because there's an engine problem so they're still trying to fix it. Crew meal preparation starts. Hmm dinner. Just right, I'm starving. Took my celphone out of my bag and texted Al.
00:10. Having crew meal dinner on a passenger seat.
It was getting really warm inside the cabin as the engine won't be able to support the airconditioning system while it's being fixed. Meanwhile, we hoard blankets to provide the passengers at the gate area, where it's really cold. I remove my coat and continue eating.
01:30. Feeling really sleepy already, I made myself a cup of coffee.
Chatting with Ate Sofie, it's getting really really warm so I undid my scarf. Most of the crew is asleep on business class seats. I can't imagine how they could fall asleep when I'm sweating endlessly. Ew. Every now and then we hoard more cups, water, blankets, orange juice and hand them over to the ground staff who were taking care of the impatient passengers outside.
01:50. I overheard the first officer tell the captain that we will be extending another two more hours (lead time) to let the maintenance team work on the engine, and if it doesn't get fixed by then we'll have to head back to a hotel and fly in the morning. Right, as if it isn't morning yet.
By now passengers are really mad. I could tell by the faces of the ground staff. There was even a time when they asked one crew to go and talk to them coz the passengers wanted to speak to a Korean. More water, more juice, cups and almost every blanket has been given out by now. A number of passengers had gone back to hotels and will take the next Asiana flight the following night.
05:30. Over the PA, we were notified to prepare to go back to hotel.
Well finally! Scorching heat inside that metal tube called airplane got me looking like I already came from a flight. Oops, why can't we go out yet? They're trying to get as much passengers out from the gate area before we go through for fear that they'd attack us(?) We've been advised that some passengers are sleeping there already and will be flying on a Singapore Airlines flight in a couple of hours or so.
06.30. We're back at a hotel. Will get sleep before the sun rises!
13:30. I woke up from coma.
13:55. The phone rings. Wakeup call. Leaving the hotel by 14:15, flight by 15:30.
What the hell! Twenty minutes to prepare?! I call up Ate Sofie then literally run and change to my uniform, pull my hair back to whatever bun I could manage, dab a little makeup and run. Once inside the coach that takes us from the hotel to the airport, all of us were doing our makeup.
14:50. Airport. We learn it's a ferry flight!
Oh yea. So we really didn't need the makeup after all. We're flying ferry flight (no passengers). Hmm. It's my first. What do we actually do? No idea.
15:45. We're still in Singapore. WTH? Why aren't we moving yet? More delays! Waaaaaah! Some unclear paths over Manila (of all the places) makes it impossible to pass so we aren't cleared for takeoff.
16:00. Crew meal again. Me thinks, will the delays ever stop?
I'm so worried coz unlike most of the crew onboard who gets a dayoff on July 10, I don't. I'm scheduled to fly to LAX the following day, and yes Los Angeles is one of the most tiring flights and particularly the one I hate the most. I haven't had a decent sleep nor a decent shower--oh if only there's a shower room onboard I'd be the first one to use it!
17:00. Takeoff. Finally!
We just had to do the doors and then we're free to somersault in the aircraft. We all are in business class doing our own businesses. Haha. There's a galley full of supplies so when I get thirsty I just get up and serve myself. Add crew life in business class with absolutely no passengers. Hair down, coats and scarves off, and wearing slippers... We lounge around like I was just in Seokyo Hotel.
The big question in my head was: What's my schedule for the following days?
To the passengers who were freaking out and shouting, I have just one thing to say: Don't complain when there's a safety issue like this engine problem. There's always a choice: Fly then die in a crash, OR wait and actually get to your destination. You think we actually like delays? If you have to get to your destination asap and it's a matter of life and death, I believe you won't think twice about getting another flight. There always are other options.
I got LAX cancelled for me and was given days off if you must ask. :) Wee. I got checked in at the hotel past midnight. You could imagine the shock of the people at front desk. Haha.