Month Eleven. Lineholder. #SEA.

One of the great things about this job is the flexibility. If you want to work multiple days in a row, have long overnights and layovers in different cities every day, you can do it. If you want to work weekdays, nine-to-five, and have the seniority to bid for locals, you can be home with your kids and significant other every night.

And then there's me. I feel like I try out a new schedule every month. December was long trips to Canada every week, January I pretty much only worked locals on weekends and February I was assigned long layovers in Colorado Springs.

This month, I'm switching to the graveyard shift.

Sort of. A "stand-up" is a term that applies to a trip that begins in the evening, is one leg to a city with a brief 3-6 hour stay in that city, and then a painfully early morning flight back. It is considered continuous duty, with your brief hotel stay being a sort of nap in the middle of duty time. It's called a stand-up because you supposedly sleep "standing up." It's often worth premium pay, or overtime. It's exhausting, but great if you want to have your days free.

My March schedule is completely full of stand-ups and a few red-eyes. I bid for stand-ups, because I wanted to try something new. With Spring just around the corner, I wanted to spend more afternoons reading in coffee shops, more mornings at the public market and more days free with my boyfriend.

And so I'm going to be working at night. It seems strange, to be heading into work when the sun goes down. But I'm a night owl anyways, and night planes are full of sleeping passengers, and sleeping passengers are usually happy passengers.

Tonight I start a trip at 11pm out of San Francisco and fly to Austin. I spent the day roaming the streets of Chinatown, visiting the Ferry building and soaking up the sun. Now I'm hopping back on the BART to the airport, wondering what my first night shift will bring.

Happy flying!


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