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It’s Emily here again, the International Airline Professional (IAP) from Toronto. And I’m excited, because today’s the day – I’m off to Seeheim, Lufthansa’s training centre in Germany. Over the next five days, I’ll be giving you some insight into an IAP’s second home; I hope you enjoy it!

I haven’t seen most of my IAP colleagues since October, so I’m really looking forward to this. (I feel a bit funny using the term ‘colleagues’ – it seems too formal. They’re more like a surrogate family).

This past week has been a welter of work, both in the office and at home. For the next five months, I’m in Toronto for only four weeks. I go from Seeheim to Toronto to New York to Toronto to Beijing and Pyongyang (vacation) to Frankfurt to Seeheim and back to Toronto – giving a whole new meaning to “nonstop you”. This is one part of the job that really requires a lot of organization, but for someone who loves to travel – like myself – it’s 100% worth it.

About to check in at YYZ.

I’ll only be in Seeheim for three days this time around, which is a far cry from an IAP’s average four-week tenure. I’ve managed to squeeze things into one mid-sized suitcase (pack light? What does that mean?), and as I roll it toward the Lufthansa check-in counters at Toronto’s Pearson Airport, I’m already feeling relaxed. Having spent three months working at the airport, I know the drill pretty well.  I drop off my bag, grab my boarding pass, stop to chat with the ticketing agents, and sail through security (as much as one can really ‘sail’ through security nowadays, anyway).

Lufthansa’s (not so busy) check-in lines – I picked a good time to show up!

I stop by a restaurant for my traditional pre-flight quesadilla. Naturally, the zipper on my bag chooses this moment to break; muttering something rude under my breath, I pry it open with my fingernails. Now, instead of a leisurely stroll to the gate, it’s a mad dash to three different stores to find a replacement before boarding.

As I make it to the gate, breathing a bit heavily (I really must get back to the gym), I notice that it’s begun to snow lightly. I smile wryly – Burak, the operations agent working this flight, must be freezing.

Finally, it’s time to board.  I get on, take a glass of champagne from the flight attendant, kick back in my rather spacious seat, and get cozy for take-off. My baggage woes melt away. I’m excited. I’m going home.

And we’re off!

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