3.45am, the alarm clock rings and I wake up from some nice dreams! I cut off the alarm and turn around for more sleep! But less than one minute later: another alarm clock... Yeah I know why I do set 2
Cut this one, too! But this time: get up... Another 737 flight is waiting for you
Ok, a little tired and feeling dizzy, I try to find my way to the bathroom... Taking a shower to wake up...
Damn, I forgot to iron my shirt... So I ironed my shirt!
Now, finding my way to the kitchen (must sound like i had a Huge house, but its just a small apartment)! Preparing a quick breakfast with toast, nutella and a glass of milk...
Now I need to get dressed (must look funny to sit naked in the cockpit)...
Ok, now dressed... Checking if I have packed everything for this LONG day... Laptop, License, sunglasses, pen, Cameras, cell phone, ear plugs, wallet, LH ID
and the famous hat! yeah I think I am all set...
Oh, where are my car keys? Ah, here they are...
at about 5am I am leaving home. 20 minutes later I arrive at the LH
base in FRA
. Getting into the parking lot with my LH ID
... Where is the closest parking space that I dont have to walk for so long... Here we go! Getting my bag and my hat out of the car, locking it and taking the elevator to the 1st floor! Walking over to the so called BG2 (Bürgogebäude 2, Office building 2). Damn, someone forgot to switch on the Air condition...
Finding an empty computer to Check in! Its 5.30am now and I can see that no one else of my crew has arrived yet. We can see that on the so called: Check- in sheet on the Computer screen! Still 35 minutes until I have to show up at the FOC (Flight operations Center) and meet the captain.
I am printing out the flight infos (not the documentation). Flight number, aircraft type, routing, pax load, crew members, STD, STA
, duty time and max duty time and crew rest time after these flights... It just say: FRA
LH4570 05:15 -- 06:10 (all times in UTC
) and BRU
LH4571 06:50 -- 07:50! Thats all I have to do on that day...
So, what to do now? Getting something to drink (no coffee, I dont like coffee), so only a water and an orange juice!
Now getting slowly to the FOC and sitting down at a docking station where I can update my Laptop with all the new information. Booting the laptop, connect with the LH
intranet and update my database! No major changes, so I can check the flight documentation now!
Not printing them out yet, I'm gonna wait shortly before the captain arrives (to have the latest information available then). D-ABXX is it for today (Bad Homburg v.d. Höhe). Flight time about 41 minutes and FL220 only... SOBRA2L departure runway 18 in FRA
and expecting LNO1A for 25L in BRU
. Callsign: Lufthansa 6YY!? Oh no... Expected Load: 9578kgs, Estimated ZFW (Zero fuel weight): 43568kgs, Estimated Take off weight: 47827kgs and estimated landing weight: 46014kgs!
Fuel: Tripfuel 1813kgs, CONTfuel: 228kgs, Alternate (EBOS): 875ks, Final Reserve: 1343kgs! So our minimum fuel for take off has to be at least: 4259kgs! Capacity is 16000kgs, so no problem...
Weather: in BRU
and in FRA
some thunderstorm are expected and forecasted as well for the alternate EBOS...
NOTAMS: for FRA
only some parking positions new (cargo area) and nothing special for our flight. Same for BRU
and the alternates... So, this is all we need...
Close to 6am... in 5 minutes the captain should show up...
Ah, there he is! A nice hello at 6am, seems to be a nice captain! Just a little small talk about the time and how tired we are... but then Business! The Captain is checking all the information on his own! He asked me which flight I wanna do: to BRU
or back to FRA
! I said I dont care, I have been to both airports a lot... So he said that he will fly to BRU
then. Ok, fine with me! How much fuel? The Captain suggested 5600 and 200 taxi, means block fuel 5800 kgs! Gives us an extra fuel of 1341kgs which is about 33 minutes! So enough for a holding if there is a thunderstorm in BRU
Fuel ordered! Now, meeting the cabin Crew! 3 F/As (all female today). Doing a short briefing about security, emergency, medical issues etc...
And then: try to find the aircraft! Watching on a huge screen where ALL
flights within the next 2 hours are listed... BRU
... Where is BRU
?! Ah, there is it... Parking stand A40... Gate position not too far from the LH
Getting through the security check for Crews and then entering the Bus which took us to the aircraft.
It was already on the parking stand and the cleaning and catering was already on board.
Captain and I entered the cockpit and I started with the Cockpit Preparation. Cabin Crew is checking the cabin and the captain is doing the walk around...
After about 15 minutes everything is set: All the panels, FMC, levers, buttons, NAV aids set, charts, frequencies... Ready to read the „Cockpit check complete Checklist". Done and everything is checked and ready for boarding now...
Passengers are walking down the jetway and captain was drinking his coffee and I was drinking water... I prepared the laptop with the weather and airport information for the take off data calculation...
Finally we got the loadsheet: about 90 passengers (dont really 100%), Take off weight 48.9 tons! I put all the infos in the laptop and hit enter: V1: 147, Vr: 149, V2
: 153, flaps 1° take off, runway 18, intersection 'A' and the EOSID (engine out, special instrument departure).
Captain enters all the infos into the FMC and we are now all set!
Ramp agent came and took all the papers we dont need anymore.
Ok, ready to move! Jetway removed, calling Frankfurt delivery for start up clearance. „LH
6YY, information 'M', requesting start up" - „LH
6YY, start up approved to BRU
, via SOBRA2L SID, Flight plan route, Transponder 3453" I read that back and then we were instructed to switch to apron for push and taxi...
Captain is talking to the pushback truck driver... Ground is ready for push! I am asking Apron for the pushback clearance: „LH6YY pushback approved onto M1" - And I read it back...
Slowly we start to move backwards! „Before Start Checklist" - done... Ready to start engines!
„Engine number 2 -- START"... the engine starts to turn and the fuel ignites and it stabilizes at idle. „Engine number 1 - START" ... same now for the engine #1! Pushback completed. Remove towing truck and steering pin, handsignal... and off he goes... I perform my after start items, setting flaps and electric, pneumatic, ice etc...„AFTER START CHECKLIST"
„LH6YY request taxi" - „LH6YY taxi to runway 18 via M1 and N" - and I read it back!
right side clear and we start taxiing to runway 18.
Approaching runway 18: „LH6YY contact tower on 124.85" - I read it back and contact tower and tell him that we are ready.
Tower: „LH6YY, wind 030 at 3 knots, you are cleared for take off runway 18, tschüß" - Read back the clearance...
Starting the clock. Captain: „TAKE OFF" He is advancing the throttles until 84.4%N1 „Take off power set" ...... „80" „checked" ..... „GO" ..... „ROTATE" .... slowly we are lifting off the runway and climbing into the sky... „GEAR UP
I contact Frankfurt departure on 136.125 and we were cleared to climb FL110. At about 9000 feet the captain engages the autopilot and passing 10000 feet we turned off the seat belt signs... We clibed to our cruising altitude of 22000 or FL220!
Shortly before the waypoint BITBU (where the Bitburger Beer is coming from) was a thunderstorm ahead of us! We told the controller that we have to turn right to avoid! He cleared us direct to FLO
(a VOR near BRU
Then we got radar verctors for the final approach runway 25L. Descending to 3000' and following the ILS. Flaps, gear down, cabin secured, final checklist read and CLEARED TO
Captain did a nice and smooth landing and we vacated 25L via C4. Contacted ground: „LH6YY taxi to parking 163, via the INNER and R4
its just a short way to the position. We arrived there on schedule and shut off the engines and the passengers left the aircraft.
Now we had 40 minutes to prepare the aircraft for the flight back. So, cleaning, catering, refueling and all these things... We were ready on schedule, but then we got a SLOT for FRA
... At 0725... So a little late! So we had to wait about 20 minutes in the aircraft until we could pushback and start out engines. We taxied to runway 25R this time and left BRU
on a SPRIMONT 2C SID... Our cruising level was FL230 this time. The closer we got to FRA
the more traffic we could hear! Some had to enter a holding and all had to reduce speed to the minimum clean speed (210-220 knots on the 737). No holding for us, but a little delay vectors! I did a normal landing on 07L and vacated via Mto. Contact ground for taxi! We found our parking position and shut down the engines...
The Passengers left the aircraft and the following crew has arrived, too! Aircraft was ok, cleaning up the chaos in the cockpit! Dont forget anything and get out... waiting for the bus taking us back to the LH
Finally arrived there and saying bye to the crew... When to see next? Nobody knows...
Thats it for the day... Back to the car and 20 minutes Later I was back home on my couch, watching TV
Well, that's it for now... I kept the flight back a little shorter, nothing special happened there and it was pretty much the same as the flight to BRU
I hope you enjoyed it...