10/14/2010

It has been a bad week for easyJet and other airlines

A bad week for the airlines, mainly because of the strikes in France. However, as recounted in episode 4 of the secret diary of an easyJet Switzerland aircraft, there were other interesting events.


I (the easyJet Switzerland Airbus A319, full name HB-JZI) again had an interesting week, as you can see in this fourth installment of my secret diary. OK, most of the problems were caused by the strikes in France, but they did not explain everything.

We still have some sickness going around, I think, and the latest victim was my brother, (HB-JZ)K. Last Saturday, 9 October, he seemed OK all day until his last trip to Lisbon in the evening. On the way back he had a bad turn, and had to make an unscheduled call into our medical centre in Madrid. Maybe next time, when I tell him to check his medecine cabinet before leaving, he will take more notice.

Anyway, they diagnosed a temporary indisposition, so kept him there overnight and part of the next day. That meant that he only got back here just before 4pm. Fortunately he had recovered enough to go back to Lisbon again that same evening: I suppose that his antibodies were fully activated, so it was not a problem.

It did leave us a bit short-handed on the Sunday. My own pilot on my early flight to Nice was so worried that he got my call sign wrong (LEZS1377 instead of EZS1377), but the air controllers easily deal with things like this. However, we did have to ask a Gatwick cousin to help us out by coming here and then going back (rather late for the return, of course, but I think that seasoned Geneva-Gatwick passengers often anticipate a long delay! Anyway, I made a point of going to Gatwick myself that evening to thank them.

Unfortunately ,I think they are still infectious there, because the next day (Monday) I was also laid low for most of the day. This meant more help from our Gatwick cousins (and more long delays for Gatwick passengers). Happily, I was well again by the afternoon, but my masters took no risks of further infection: they sent me to Amsterdam and Brussels.

The industrial action (should we not call it industrial inaction?) really hit in on the Tuesday. Although 9 of my brothers still left early, I was allowed to profit from the first cancellation of the day (to Nice). We also had a reasonably relaxing day because of other cancelled flights to France, which meant less rushed turn-arounds.

Since then all appears to have been fairly smooth, though I realise that to say so is to tempt fate! On verra bien, as some of our friends in France say. Which leads me to worry about the retirement plans against which they are protesting. I have been told that I cannot retire for many years yet, as the next generation of aircraft like me will not be ready until at least 2015, maybe even 2020.

Even when they are ready, I might not be able to retire, but might find myself sold to some smaller airline and have to go to live in a less developed country. What a prospect!

 

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