In the jargon of cabin crew, the word pax means passengers, slips means stop-overs and dunlops means the end of a flight when the wheels touch the tarmac. This is a book of memories, told in unaffected terms by Qantas cabin crew from the days of the flying boats right through to the latest 747 jumbos. It provides wonderful insights into a byegone era of leisurely travel and how an airline works today. How in 1938 it took nine days with 30 stops to reach London, with the flying boats setting down in remote spots such as Koepang in Indonesia and Tiberias on the Sea of Galilee. And when passenger amenities included golf putters, deck quoits and fishing rods to use at refueling stops. Then suddenly, the fun was over. It was war time and cabin crew and other Qantas staff were killed as they helped evacuate refugees from Singapore, the Dutch East Indies and New Guinea. And then on into the makeshift post-war era of converted British bombers before the arrival of the 'Connies' and 'Super Connies' - those graceful propeller driven aircraft. Meanwhile Qantas cabin crew moved up from serving 15 passengers on a Lancastrian to over 300 on the jumbos and somehow even cared for 700 on board one flight after the Cyclone Tracy disaster. And behind all this is a sub-culture of nicknames, anecdotes, service and community spirit such as the Pathfinders Auxiliary supporting children with vision and hearing impairments, helping the Shepherd Centre for Deaf Children, UNICEF and other charitable causes. Along the way Qantas cabin crew met princes and prelates, rock stars and royalty, and smiled, laughed and sympathised on call. It's hard not to experience a wonderfully warm feeling as you read this book. --- from book's back cover
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