Saturday, January 31, 2009

Personal Hygiene

As I get ready to head home after a 6 day tour, most of the clothes in my suitcase are dirty. In the case of my workout gear, they are also pretty smelly. Keeping the dirty separate from the clean is a challenge. It's not easy packing for 6 days in only a rollerboard (although I've seen crewmembers hauling a full size suitcase), especially in the winter. It never fails. I pack more long sleeve shirts: the majority of the tour will be in the tropics. The reverse is also true.

Additionally, we crewmembers also have to carry enough uniform items to last the whole tour. During colder months, we can usually get away with wearing our white shirts two days in a row, and our pants? Well, depends on the pilot. I've seen guys wear them a week at a time, but I prefer just a couple of days per pair. Then there's the sweater, blazer and overcoat. That's a lot of gear.

So how do we stay fresh and clean on the road? Well, FBOs help us out by keeping an array of toiletries on the counters in the bathroom. Some FBOs have a mini drugstore, with hairspray, lotion, bodysprays, deodorants, toothbrushes and paste, and most importantly, mouthwash. This picture is from an FBO in Florida. This is the largest container of Listerine I have ever seen. I don't know if bad breath is a Florida thing or a pilot thing (drinking a lot of coffee doesn't help, I'm sure).

Some FBOs also stock colognes. This is dangerous territory. MOST pilots do not wear any type of perfume because in an enclosed cockpit the smell can get pretty cloying. And everyone has different preferences for scents. The other day my captain and I were sitting in an FBO pilot lounge and a pilot walked in wearing a cloud of cologne. Yikes! His copilot walked in and called him on it, and he replied that he had gone a little crazy with the cologne provided in the bathroom. Note to FBO: please do not enable this behavior!

1 comment:

  1. Thought for sure the Crew Desk would be sending me to South America (EZE) today--so I packed short sleeves and sandals. So, it's off to DEN for me...after repacking, of course!