Lately it kind of feels like I am unemployed.
You see, I had this eye thing. I woke up last Wednesday at my mom’s and it felt like someone had stabbed me in the eye with a fork, but my eye looked totally normal. My mom convinced me to go to acute care around noon, when it felt like I’d been stabbed with a fork, then splashed in the face with salt water and punched, all at the same time. Which was exactly as pleasant as it sounds.
The doctor said he was worried about my vision, which was cloudy in the left [forked-sprayed-punched] eye, so he sent me to a specialist, who couldn’t find anything wrong with my eye except some inflammation after many, many tests.* The fancypants specialist also couldn’t seem to understand the fact that I am an adult and he should address information about my medical condition to ME, not my mother who was present as my mode of transportation and supplier of family history (lots of eye issues in the ol’ family tree, big-worded ones that I would never remember). My mom had a pretty rockin’ game face, though, while I was shooting her absurd looks and gesticulating wildly as the doctor continued to discuss the application of prescription eye drops and the fact that I really should probably get some damn glasses with his back fully turned to me.
All of this to say that the good doctors conferred and decided I should be grounded from flight for three days, lest my eye problems worsen while I’m on a plane giving a safety demo – or serving cocktails, whatever – rendering me unable to get to an ophthamologist in a timely manner.
Coinciding with these three glorious surprise days off, in which I felt only the occasional twinge of eye discomfort, were three previous days, which I spent at my mom’s doing wedding things with this lady and hanging out with this guy:
Then I spent three days at home getting stuff done and getting a kick out of hanging out with my own silly animals.
I had one day of airport reserve (one twelve-hour sit? PSH!) in two weeks, on Sunday. And unless Christ was rising to 32,000 feet I was unable to partake of the Easter festivities this year, which were sadly lacking in Cadbury eggs. Then it was my regularly scheduled days off again!
Now, I hesitate to even bring this up, because it kiiiiind of feels like I am going to jinx it and I yell at Zack if he so much as breathes the words “crew scheduling” in my general direction, but I’ve had a lot of home reserve lately. Which is exactly what it sounds like: you sit at home, on call, and if they need you to fly they call and if they don’t it’s like a day off. Only where you can’t drink at all because you’re on call from 6AM until 10PM.
I was supposed to sit 12-hour airport reserve shifts today, tomorrow, and Saturday. At 6:42AM scheduling called to change things around, which is almost never good news. Usually it means they have a trip for you, which is good if it’s not a long one, or they are adding to your schedule and trying to work you to death.
Almost never is it to give you a break.
But today! Today the clouds parted and a light shone down from the heavens and God said “Since you didn’t get those Cadbury eggs you wanted, Austin, how about a little less airport reserve?” And I was given evening reserve tonight, which is a shorter shift, and home reserve the next two days.
Which could totally become a long-ass trip or airport reserve every day, because crew scheduling owns my ass and can do whatever they want with me forever and ever, amen.
EDITED TO ADD: I am totally sitting airport reserve today, you guys.
*Side note: Wearing sunglasses around the grocery store for ten minutes while you struggle to decide which desserts to buy for family dinner, then deciding that your dilated eyes aren’t THAT noticeable and you probably look like a douchebag wearing sunglasses indoors and take them off, only to have the woman at the bakery counter stare oddly at you when you ask for JUST ONE CUPCAKE, YOU ONLY NEED ONE (for your three year old niece, you are such a good auntie) might possibly make you look like a semi-deranged stoner. Did I mention The Day of Eye Weirdness was 4/20?