Once upon a time, a few years ago, I was a flight attendant. Sure, I had traveled in the past. My family lives in England and I often would go to see them, catching the travel bug every time. I sailed the Bahamas, I’d taken road trips, I’d seen a good part of the world.
This story is about facing fears with minimal clothing.
I used to pack heavy for everything. I mean, really heavy. Three day trip? Might as well take two suitcases. Then, I got accepted into flight attendant school. I always knew I wanted to travel for a living, I just didn’t know when it would happen. Once I finished, I was shipped off to New York City to be based out of their 3 airports. Lucky me, my first 6 days of working were “on-call” days, meaning the airline can call me whenever, wherever, and I had about three hours to get my butt to whatever airport they told me to get to.
The first call I got was a standby position at JFK. I sat and I sat, and I never got used. I sulked back to my friends apartment in the East Village and I waited until the next day. The next day I get called, another standby position. I brought 2 suitcases with me to New York, but seeing as I didn’t get called the night before, I chose to bring my small carry on suitcase, packed with only a few items including a romper and little booties. I’d be going right back to my friend’s apartment, anyway.
Well, there was my first mistake.
I got a call. I was going to Zurich. Zurich……I wasn’t THAT bad at geography, but not going to lie, I had to look it up. My first EVER trip as a flight attendant would be to Zurich, Switzerland.
So I freaked out. Here I was with almost nothing in my suitcase, and about to take an international trip, all while trying to figure out exactly how to be a flight attendant. What the frick was I doing? I had no idea.
Fortunately for me, the other people on this trip were amazing. They were helpful on the plane and off, the pilots who had been there multiple times showed us around, brought us to dinner, and gave us the tour of this amazingly beautiful place I was certain I had dreamed up. I’m telling you, even the construction sites in this place were cleaner than anywhere I’d ever seen in America and beyond.
With my tiny suitcase, I had what I needed to charge my phone, travel across the world, see the Swiss Alps, eat Swiss food and chocolate, walk the streets of a new, incredible land, and get my first ever taste of the life I got to live for a few years.
Moral of the story: Just pack light. It will be fine. Just kidding, the real lesson here is that even when you think you don’t have enough, you may be very surprised to know that you have everything you need.