February 15th, 1991
Flight from BDA – TPA – BDA
Hamilton Princess Hotel, Bermuda
Tea and toast this morning with Tessa and Ava (at this point, I barely remember the names of my fellow crew members!) where Ava held court from the comfort of the couch, informing us quite sternly that we, “Mustn’t miss the love boat.”
“What do you mean?” Tessa asked, sounding oh so innocent!
“Come a little closer, my sweet girls. I want you to listen very carefully. If you should happen to meet a chap, I mean one who holds your attention, grab onto him with both hands, and leave British Airways. Immediately! Am I making myself clear?”
Tessa yawned, but not wanting to appear rude, I nodded yes.
“You mustn’t end up like me,” Ava stated, looking wistful. “I missed the boat a very long time ago and I deeply regret never having married or having children. You must, are you listening Tessa?”
“Uh-huh,” Tessa uttered, picking at her chipped nail varnish.
“You must,” Ava continued. “And I mean must, pay attention to every opportunity life presents, most especially where love is concerned. I’ve found, sadly, that the boat sometimes sails only once.”
I think Ava has a point. I can already see how fast times flies (ha!) and how easy it’d be to reach, say, forty and turn around, wondering what on earth you’d been doing all those years. I’ve already discovered how quickly one trip falls into another but I think if you want to build a life with someone, the first step is being open to the possibility, which I believe I am, regardless of how shitty that’s proved so far!
This afternoon, we operated the shuttle to and from Tampa, where Ava refused to leave the aircraft, spending the turnaround time in, where else, but the First Class cabin. I suspect the last time Ava ventured through the curtain was decades ago, if ever! With the cleaners and maintenance people working around her, she had them eating out of her hand, tending to her every need!
Tessa invited Ava and I, as well as the guys to her room for drinks tonight and I had to laugh when Graham told me he and Elliott borrowed the ties they wore last night, from Alan (what is it with these “senior” crew and their trip wardrobe?)
Alan was hanging on Ava’s every word and they enjoyed reminiscing about, “the good old days,” where it seems flying was much more glamorous and as Ava is fond of saying, “Civilized.”
Sitting next to Graham on the couch, he asked if I’ve ever met anyone like Ava.
“Never! She’s one of a kind, don’t you think?”
“Most definitely,” he nodded as I caught Ava’s eye.
“Don’t forget what we discussed dahling,” she cooed, from the other side of the room. “Sometimes it only sails once.”
Don’t worry Ava, I won’t forget.