I love flying. Sometimes I am envious of people who get to fly even more than I do. And I don’t mean the business travelers who go from Munich to Hamburg twice a week and return that same night. If you can’t even watch a whole movie it doesn’t count!
I love long-distance flights; being in my flight bubble, watching all the movies, and even the airplane food. Call me a weirdo, there is something oddly satisfying to me about eating food out of little containers and drinking free wine in the afternoon (because there is always wine o’clock somewhere in the world and plane calories don’t count!).
Honestly flying is my favorite mode of transport and whenever I am on a plane I fully embrace the concept of the journey being the reward and not simply a nuisance to overcome to get to your destination.
With that thought in mind, I was intrigued when I attended a press conference of Condor last year to find out more about their 60 year anniversary. 60 years is a long time of getting people from A to B and it is nice to see that Condor still seems to be as enthusiastic about flying as I am.
While my history is only 27 years old (how is that even possible??), I thought I would share some facts & figures about my and Condor’s history of flying.
Condor: Their inaugurating flight (back then Condor was called Deutsche Flugdienst GmbH) was 1956 to Egypt. They had stop-overs in Nice and Athens as well as a full layover in Beirut.
Me: My inaugurating flight was in 1990 to Mallorca. I don’t remember much except that it always rained in Mallorca.
First Long Distance Flight
Condor: In 1965 their first Boings 727 went to Thailand, Sri Lanka, and the Dominican Republic.
Me: My first long distance flight was 1995 to Cape Town with my sister. It must have been a good one since I have since loved both, long distance flights and Cape Town.
Condor: Back in the day you would dress up to fly. That meant ties for the men and costumes for the ladies. The uniforms of the first flight attendants included a 2-piece costume with 50 buttons, white gloves and of course a little box hat!
Me: While I don’t consciously dress up, according to my cousin I do look dressy. I usually wear my uniform – skinny jeans, a long silk shirt, a cardigan and an oversized shawl/blanket. In all honesty, though, it is not something I ever spent much thought about, they are just clothes that I find comfortable and I tend to wear all the time.
However, I once saw two ladies in pink Juicy Couture sweatpants sitting in business class and felt quite indignant. Since when is Juicy Couture allowed in business class but I am not?? So maybe that memory sneaked in my sub-conscious and makes me wear a silk shirt/jeans combo instead of my favorite sweatpants. You never know when you may end up in business class and don’t want to look out of place.
Condor: In the beginning, there was no such thing as in-flight entertainment; it was up to the staff to entertain the passengers. Sometimes someone would play guitar or the captain would announce a quiz. Whoever won would be allowed to sit in the cockpit for landing.
Me: I am a happy girl as a long as I have Friends re-runs and shark documentaries. Maybe a good movie or two. Knock on wood I only had one horrible flight where the entertainment system didn’t work. Mind you, I would sacrifice the movies again if I could sit in the cockpit for landing!
Most Exciting Flight
Condor: In 1971 their first jumbo jet had its ferry flight from Seattle to Hamburg. To celebrate the occasion the staff played a table tennis match against journalists they had invited on the plane. As it happened in 10,000m height it made a world record.
Me: I was lucky enough to fly in an A380 business class in 2015. The staff almost had to drag me out of there and it was honestly prettier than the flat I was living in at the time, table tennis or not.
Condor: In 1972 one of the jumbos landed in Sri Lanka and was greeted by elephants on the landing field. Honestly, what could be better?!
Me: In 2004 I was lucky enough to travel to St. Barths. From St. Maarten I got to travel in a 4-seater and called shotgun. Nothing was more exciting than doing a very steep landing (St. Barths is known for it) sitting next to the pilot in a very small plane. While that was rollercoaster good, I am not sure it beats being greeted by elephants.
It Was A Very Good Year… 1979
Condor: While they sold their famous Boings 747, Max and Fritz, this year, Condor also acquired three new planes. They were DC 10s and I don’t think I have seen a better-looking plane before – as they were unpainted, they not only looked very shiny and sleek, they also saved a whole lot of fuel due to less weight.
Me: I was born and Mother Theresa got her Nobel Peace Price. Surely that is enough reason to make it a very good year?!
Condor: At the beginning of the 90s Condor had a lot of fun with advertising their 69 destinations. Their favorite slogan was: Kiss each other in places you have never kissed before.
Me: I am not a member of the mile high club and have no intention of changing that anytime soon. And while I have kissed a handful of boyfriends on a plane, nothing was more exciting than kissing one in a helicopter overlooking Cape Town!
Condor: For their 40th birthday Condor got themselves a brand new look. They commissioned different artists to paint model planes and ultimately chose pop artists James Rizzi’s design for one of their real planes.
Me: While I don’t quite get myself an entire plane for my birthday, I do like to buy flight tickets. March 7th is approaching fast and I have a few ideas on my mind already…
Picture Perfect Check-In
Condor: When Condor introduced their jumbo jets, a lot of airports struggled to handle the size of them and often the right equipment was lacking. There was no seat assignment so the rule was simple: run fast, get to the plane first and not only chose your seat but also get a small bottle of sparkling wine or a banana.
Me: On my flight home to Germany on Feb. 17th I got a surprise business class update and was greeted with a glass of sparkling wine, no running necessary 😉
What are your most memorable moments in your personal history of flying?
This post was done in cooperation with Condor.