One of the benefits (?) of being an airline pilot is that you have the option of living where you want while working somewhere else. More traditional jobs usually require you live relatively close to your place of employment. Instead of a drive to work, I drive to the airport and then take two airline flights before I arrive at my base of operations on the opposite side of the country. So far it has been relatively easy making my commute flights (knock on aluminum/composite) . I always take the first flights available that head me in the right direction. I figure that it is better to spend a little idle time in close proximity to my base knowing that I will be able to check in for my flight rather than waiting until the last minute to make the commute and not really know if it will all work out. I guess I’ve just been doing this too long to depend on one option for getting to work.
This morning I got on my first flight at 7 am, jumpseating with the great folks at Southwest. There were a few empty seats in the cabin, so I even got a ‘regular’ seat rather than the one that folds down out of the cockpit doorway. I grabbed a window seat and was sending off my last tweets before the door closed when a man took the aisle seat. Nice guy. He asked if I minded a question. I hesitated, then I said sure give it a try. As much as I dislike it, I commute wearing my airline uniform. It makes the gauntlet through security marginally easier if it is obvious that you are an airline crew member. The down side is that you risk getting the ‘back seat driver’ comments and occasional inane questions.