Thursday, 31 July 2008

Sensationalist news

If any of you read PPrune on a regular basis (the link's on this blog if you don't) you'll know how much pilots HATE the media. I think they have a good reason to, often; when you know a little about what really happened in an incident, it's a real eye opener to see some of the rubbish that's reported in the end!

Anyhow - my husband found this link today on Pprune, and sent it to me. It's utterly hilarious, so I thought I'd share it with you all! It's an Australian "Lazy Journalist Plane Story Generator". Fantastic.

Sunday, 27 July 2008

Baby blues

A few days ago, we decided we'd get out a DVD and have a nice evening in. We had that predictable 'his n hers' dispute over what sort of film to get. My husband favoured an action flick, but I wanted to see a romantic comedy. You could almost write the script before we got in there!

Anyhow, after some protracted negotiation (and a little reminder from me that the last film we got out was an action film, and it was, in fact, rubbish) we settled on my choice. It was Juno, which I'd heard good things about. It's an oddball American comedy about a teenage girl who gets pregnant by mistake and then picks a couple to adopt her child. If you haven't seen it, I'd recommend it.

The problem was, though, that I was so focused on the good things I'd heard about it that I was rather blind to the subject matter. Because I am, you see, rather emotional about all things baby at the moment. I was fine through most of it, in fact pretty much all of it, until, naturally, it came to the birth and the baby being handed over to the delighted new mum, and then, well - I started to cry.

And just then, when I was wallowing, and feeling miserable about whether I'd ever be a mum, my husband leaped up from the other sofa and suddenly was right by my side. He didn't say anything - he didn't need to. He just got hold of me and hugged me tight while I cried.

I love him so much.

Sunday, 20 July 2008

The fuel price nightmare continues

I read a few days ago that Ryanair's going to cancel 250 flights from Stansted this winter - about 14% of their total. I'm not an expert on Ryanair by any means, but I think that's a fairly unprecedented move. They're apparently Europe's most profitable airline (which I find hard to believe, when they sell flights for 99p, but there you go) so I'm sure they'll survive, but - it's just not a great sign of things to come, is it?

There are definitely jitters throughout the industry at the moment. There are lots of rumours on Pprune about airlines that might or might not go bust. I hope and pray for all of the families who are affected by this industry that somehow we all get through this, and come out the other side.

It's going to be nasty for a fair while yet before it gets better though, I fear.

Saturday, 12 July 2008

Life on the treadmill

Not the gym kind - although I spend quite a lot of time on there too - but that metaphorical kind that I feel I'm permanently on at the moment, and let me tell you, it's exhausting.

My husband told me the other day that he felt his airline was in charge of his life, and I suppose it is, although it's not just his life, but both of our lives, really. We have the same problems as most other families where one member is a pilot; planning social occasions in advance is fraught with ifs and buts, and the jet lag and tiredness associated with the job makes socialising tricky even when he is home. My job is stressful and fairly anti-social too, so the combination of them both can really make us both feel like our time is never our own.

Which I suppose it's actually not! We're wage slaves. We're at that stage in our lives where we need to work to build up savings and pensions and pay off the mortgage, etc, etc, and there's no option to do anything else (except win the lottery, of course, and we're trying that too!) And although we get a lot more annual leave than our American cousins (we get about six weeks a year, give or take) it still never feels like enough.

So, we both feel like we live at work, and it's not nice. I'm often so tired by the end of the day that I simply don't have enough energy to tidy up, let alone go out on the town, or God forbid, have a relaxed and chatty evening with my husband, should we be lucky enough to have a night at home together. I've written elsewhere on this blog about the effects of tiredness, and I've noticed them acutely lately; lots of ridiculous nit picking and stupid disagreements, irrationally taking against a jumper left on the sofa, or a bin that hasn't been emptied yet. What's odd about these incidents is that realise I AM being ridiculous and unfair when I'm like this, and I'm sure my husband knows that too, when he's doing the same. It's just so hard to control when you're tired. One of lifes inevitabilities, perhaps.

Anyhow, our summer holidays are coming up in a month, and I can't wait. Stop the treadmill - I want to get off! If only for a week or two...

Sunday, 6 July 2008

Life's too short

I got a phone call this morning from my friend's husband, completely out of the blue.

"Have you heard?"

What dreadful words those are. All sorts of possibilities run through your mind, and none of them good. Luckily, this time, what came next wasn't the most shattering news imaginable, but still pretty bad. My friend, he went on to tell me, had collapsed on the street and started vomiting, had been taken to A&E and diagnosed with a bleed on the brain. She was in hospital, he said, but able to talk and move. Thank God for that.

I went to see her in hospital this evening. She's completely bed bound for at least a week, and luckily suffering more from boredom than anything else at the moment. The doctors aren't sure what caused it and are doing more tests, but have advised her generally to cut her stress levels and live life a little more slowly from now on.

I think that's great advice for all of us. Last year, one of my husband's friends died, completely out of the blue, and at a young age. It was a huge shock, and a wake up call for everyone who knew him. Both my husband and I began to think a little differently. It suddenly became even clearer than before how important our relationship, and our family, are; and how unimportant our jobs are compared to that. Sure, it's nice to enjoy your work and have money to spend, but when it comes down to it, no-one ever lies on their death bed wishing they'd been at work more, do they?

We know that doing this may have effects for us both career-wise, and financially, but we don't care. Our family (and our health) come first. We've chosen to invest our happiness in relationships, not in our career ladders. Because after all, life's too short already.

Tuesday, 1 July 2008

Love letters

Well, more specifically, love notes. My husband and I have this little thing where we often leave each other notes around the house. Often when he's going off on a trip he leaves me a little note by the computer saying he's thinking about me, and I do the same for him. It works particularly well as sometimes we're like ships in the night, and it just makes you smile inside when you read one, which is perfect when you haven't seen your husband properly for days!

My husband did his sim check last week, and it's sort of become a tradition that I make him sandwiches for it. So, last night, I sneaked a note into the sandwich box. He found it when he opened it for lunch, and I love the fact it was a complete surprise. It's the little things, I think, that make a difference to how you feel, and it felt lovely doing this little thing for him on what otherwise was a stressful and tiring day.

As an aside - I was sad to read a post the other day by Partner of a Pilot, in which she related the story of a friend of hers whose pilot husband has cheated on her. My heart goes out to her. What a horrible, horrible thing to deal with. If you're reading this, my dear, all the best.

I agree with Partner of a Pilot that, if you're a cheater, aviation is just the industry for you. It's so easy to get away with, and in some quarters practically encouraged. But, as I've mentioned elsewhere in this blog, I don't believe there's a pilot "type", and that somehow the men and women who do this job all fall into a category all of their own. They're all individuals, and as such can choose whether or not to cheat, just as every other person in every other job can do, too.

I know many happily married men and women who just happen to be pilots. So as I've also said elsewhere on this blog, if you're reading this and you're just embarking on a relationship with a pilot - please, don't have nightmares. Trust your instincts. If you love the person you're with, and you trust them completely, you should be fine. But if you're having doubts, and you don't feel reassured by their actions - have a serious word with them. Because I'm sure that not knowing and being in denial is worse in many ways to actually being in possession of the facts. I know I'd want to know, anyway.



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