Life on the Bubble

When it comes to my monthly schedule, I’m living on the bubble. My seniority in base is just high enough where I can hold the reserve schedule I want if I bid reserve (meaning I get the days off I want, but not necessarily the work) or if I’m lucky I get whatever is left over of the trips after all the bids have been awarded. Yes, I must bid on my schedule every month, and most times I have no idea what days I will be on call/working or off to trot about the globe. It’s never the same, which plays a big part in why I like this job so much. I call this uncertainty the bubble, and frankly, I don’t know why anyone might call it anything different, but I’m sure someone does.

For the month of December my company was offering Enhanced Leaves of Absence, meaning we could not work and not get paid, but keep the job and keep the flight bennies. There were also several weeks of planned absences what with vacations and recurrent training coming. Needless to say I was pretty sure I would be awarded a line for the month, even if it was just a build up line (a build up line is a schedule made up from leftover trips that weren’t or couldn’t be awarded due to vacation or leaves, enhanced and otherwise). But when I was in the bidding process I had a hard time deciding what to bid for. I wanted the 11th-14th to go to Arkansas with my family to see my Granmama (yeah, that’s what I call her, emphasis on the Gran), but I also had to bid to work on the 15th and 16th so I wouldn’t lose any days off with my recurrent training. Adding to that, I also wanted to try and get Christmas knowing I wouldn’t possibly get it for the second year in a row.

Well, kiddos, I didn’t get the 11th-14th, but I did get Christmas and big chunks of days before and after. Peep my schedule for the month:

Click to peep it, G.

Yeah, that’s right. I have the 23rd-28th off. I’ve not even been here two years, and I’m a fancy line holder and holding Christmas. Also, if you’ll count them up, I have 14 days off. Fourteen days is roughly (and by roughly I mean exactly) equivalent to two full weeks. It also gets a bit better here: the 15th and 16th is recurrent training so I get paid to sit in a classroom and be “taught” things I already know and not deal with ornery passengers. I’m only actually working 15 days out of the month. December will be pretty sweet except for the fact that all those trips are on the dreaded CRJ-200; I couldn’t trade away any of them. Thankfully, I work with the same pilots on two of those trips, and those guys are cooler than the other side of the pillow.

Hopefully, life on the line will continue next month, but I have to expect to be back on reserve so I don’t get my hopes up. You just never know when you live on the edge in the shadows on the fence on the bubble (I tried other phrases; they just don’t work).

3 Responses to “Life on the Bubble”

  1. Get thee to Atlanta!

  2. You’re missing “GET” on the second part of this sentence:

    “Hopefully, life on the line will continue next month, but I have to expect to be back on reserve so I don’t GET my hopes up.”

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