Travel is Sweet & It Hurts My Feet [Lessons From the Mile High Club]

I BECAME A FLIGHT ATTENDANT. I wrote that in all caps to get your attention. And because I’m obnoxious.
And it’s official; I’ve been a flight attendant for eight months. I’ve jetsetted to Washington DC, Seattle, Las Vegas, Trinidad, Florida, Colorado, New York, California and well…okay…Lansing, Michigan and Madison, Wisconsin. So far, I’ve shacked up in fifteen different hotels. And I’m really beginning to get crazy for this lifestyle.
We have a job built of 1960s allure and fantasy, kind of like a a ring girl in a circus. We travel, do things no one can imagine (i.e. jump in a giant tube to shoot 40,000 feet into the skies every day), we dress in costume-like garb and see the world. Traveling is essentially a heightened luxury, as it always has been. Although, throughout the years, people have turned airports into dark places where hangovers are nursed and they wear PINK sweatpants and high buns, it’s still different. Flying is not something every person in the world does every day.
For that, I feel pretty special. But one of the very best parts about being a flight attendant, isn’t even feeling like a pompous asshole while walking through the airport and right through security like a high class pro. It’s this dirty little confession:
I love staying in hotels.
We get our own room and there is one triumphant king-size sleeping haven. The bed takes nearly one side of an entire wall. And the sheets always smell like clean heat. The first thing I do is check every crevasse in the room to make sure a murderer isn’t lingering in the shower. Once that’s all clear, I tear off my nylons, hang up my uniform and turn on the TV. I explore what the hotel has to offer for free. Sometimes, there is a cute little bag on the bed full of lilac bed spray, an eye mask or complimentary mints and tea. There is always a lovely bar of face soap that smells like herbs and honey. And, if you’re extra lucky (or staying at the DoubleTree), you get a warm chocolate chip cookie.
I do a spin and change into comfortable clothing. And then I make a deliberate mess. I take a shower and let water get on the floor everywhere, throw my towel on the ground, wash my face and splash cool water all over the marble. I lay in the bed and let the covers crumple and bunch on one side of the bed. I write notes on my complimentary hotel pad of paper and toss it into the garbage and miss…don’t care.
Mind you, I’m not sh*tting on the floor and smearing it around (Ed Note: Nice one, Britt). I do not need a hotel maid to deal with gag reflexive disgusting things. But I will make an innocent mess just because I can. Just because I’m not worried about cleaning it up. And just because the carelessness of feeling like I’m in 4th grade again makes me feel youthful and free.
When I come back from exploring the city, I jack up the air conditioner fan so I can sleep in the cool. I make Wolfgang Puck tea and snuggle under the covers (after removing the comforter because I know it was last washed in 1986). My feet are tender from walking all day, so I stack them up on pillows or soak them in a bubbly bath. I watch whatever I want, I drink sweet tea from the vending machine outside of my room. I keep my blinds open a slit so the sun can seep in come morning. I position myself diagonally in the bed. I do everything…just because I can. It’s wonderful.
I fall asleep whenever I want, feeling oddly safe and alone. I don’t talk to anyone unless I want to. Then I call them. I fall asleep like an angel, waking up once throughout the night to realize I have five more hours of sleep to enjoy. I turn over, nuzzle my head in the sweet, stark white pillow and flutter into a careful rest. In the morning, the shuttle will be there to pick us up. I don’t have to worry about scheduling anything apart from when to press ‘Brew’ on my complimentary coffee. And to remember taking the extra face bar soap home.
I wake up feeling like a power ranger. Charged and alive. I feel slightly organized and set to go once I neatly pack my suitcase. And I wheel my little life out of the room and waltz to the elevator. My feet feel rested and unswollen from my long walk down the Vegas strip the previous day. Life is effortlessly simple. My pressed blazer and clean nylons aren’t the only things that express it.
My face looks taught and fabulous from contentment and that herbs and honey soap. Sometimes, the simple things really are the best of all.

How To: Be a Better Roommate
How To: Be a Better Roommate
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