Rule number two was written in bold type with massive underlining and Italics.
I thought I left this behind after graduating high school. It made me wonder if all the “New Stews” parents held a meeting with the airline presenting their list of wrongs. I left my family back west purposely to break the confines of parental controls.
CURFEW… try telling that to my empty stomach at 10:00 p.m. My tummy had jet lag and was still adjusting to the three hour time difference as East met West in my digestive organ.
Miss Midwest and I missed our dinner bell and the Airline Gestapo sent us straight to our room without dinner. Just like in Junior High ,when your mother got mad just because you were sent home from St. Luke’s Catholic school for setting the goldfish free in the holy water during set-up time for the Church Bazaar. Anyway, as Midwest and I sat in our double occupancy suite rifling through drawers for signs of pre-packaged sustenance, I noticed a pair of eyes peeking through the gape of our drapes covering our partially opened window.
I whispered to Midwest that someone was outside our room. She walked over and flapped the curtain open and standing like a deer in headlights was the Bell hop from the Villa’s. We stood there glaring at him as he squeezed his face partially through the window and spoke in broken English:
“Are chjew gurlz mucho hungree?”.
It was Jorge ( pronounced: HORE-HAY). The Cuban bellboy that befriended a few Stews at the villa’s. He was our only connection to the outside when forced into solitary confinement. Jorge knew everyone and everything about the Villa’s. Jorge was able to get you Anyone and Anything at Anytime from the Villa’s.
We pleaded our gastronomic case and asked if he could fetch us some food. He stated he could but we would have to accompany him. Miss Midwest gave me the same look she gave as when I pulled her into the Bentley earlier that day. We had made the time constraint of the late night bed check, but we still needed to cover ourselves should the airline gestapo happen to sleep walk. We stuffed our beds with pillows and blankets to form an “S” shape resembling two laid out Stews. After shutting the light, we proceeded to crawl out the window with the assistance of Jorge who had a golf cart waiting behind a palm tree.
Jorge ushered us into the cart and drove us to the Villa’s Restaurant, which is excluded to New Stews and open to visiting vacationers. The one thing about an Airline School in the 70’s, is most of the students are pegged the moment they arrive, and are easily identified by staff and visitor’s. I was still in my Miami white attire and Jorge was dressed in his Villa’s employee uniform. I asked Jorge to loan me his tie and red jacket and walked through the Staff entrance to the restaurant kitchen. It was there I picked up a serving tray and started to slam salami and crudites onto a pile, followed by a stash of French baguette. The kitchen staff rambled something in Cuban pointing and laughing as I paraded my silver tray through the aisles of leftovers. I turned and popped them a smile and a Gracia’s and raced back to the golf cart where my cohorts in crime anxiously awaited.
Miss Midwest et all laughed up a storm as they saw me exit with a tray of delights wearing the Bellboy’s jacket and a black bow-tie. Jorge let me drive back to our room and as I parlayed the Cart in reverse and darted with full throttle in the dark, I neglected to look behind me and rammed another cart that approached from the rear.
Two well dressed “Suits” stepped out of their golf cart and stood hovering above us ready to land their disgust with this minor
accident incident. Both gentlemen cross examined Miss Midwest and I regarding our status at “this hour of the night”, and “are we employed by the Airline?”. I conceded and offered up our feeble excuse while slowly removing my rented costume and returning it to Jorge.
The one Suit who was missing his tie stepped closer into the light and leaned into our golf cart and spat out:
“Do you know who I am? I am the V.P. of the Airline that just hired you”.
I was hoping at that time I was not going to crap my Miami white polyester pants.
Mr. Veep scolded us and threatened to have us returned to our homes. It was then I realized I should have listened to my dad and applied to law school. He always said I could argue my way out of going the wrong way on a one way street.
I pleaded with the “Pinstripes” and begged forgiveness from the courting of the idea of; maybe, just maybe, a sentencing of no breakfast in the morning? I ended with my closing statement describing the heartbreak and disappointment our parents will endure as a result of us being thrown out of “Stew School”. I sniffled a sentence or two referencing my “stature as a temporary college misfit and winning the Flight Attendant lottery with your Esteemed Airline, and how this is a child’s dream come true to one day turn in my Miami White polyester for the Noble Blue Uniform of the Wings of Man”. Then I eeked out the airlines rusty slogan in the key of “E” flat with hopes of my cohort butting in as a back up singer:
“You gotta Belieeeve in Eastern……”
The V.P. nearly peed his pants to suppress his laughter. He took our names and numbers and ordered us back to our rooms. He instructed Jorge to drive us back safely. Miss Midwest and I crawled back through our window and fell onto our beds hardly sleeping, and thinking about our demise facing us in the morning.
It was 8:00 a.m. and the morning Gestapo shift entered our room to announce that “Miss Midwest and I were Grounded for a week”, thus being responsible for the breaking of rule’s #3 and #4………
Never miss class and Never miss your Familiarization flight……
It was then I started to study the tactic’s of Gandhi and missing a meal once in a while to prevent any uprisings. Plus, how was I to know that having Hotel Staff loitering outside your window after 11:00p.m. was breaking rule #5……..
(to be continued……)