There is a certain romanticism to the idea of flying. Sure, in reality, it’s queues, bad airline food, and not enough space to turn around. But the idea of it captures the imagination and lets it (full pun intended) take flight.
This week’s cocktail party is about four airlines that all, during the first half of the Twentieth Century, took to the skies. During this one week, all four celebrate their founding (albeit in different years) and while the anniversary of one or two would defiantly serve a drink, the founding of four is definitely worth a party.
So stow away your baggage and place your seats in the upright position, because this is your Captain speaking and we’re about to celebrate all that a jet-set lifestyle can offer.
If you have ever travelled by air across Europe (or really anywhere else around the globe) there is a fair chance to might have been with KLM. Nearly 100 years old, the Royal Dutch Airline was founded on 7 October 1919.
Interestingly, also on that day (but not until 1933), Air France was founded due to the amalgamation of five smaller French airlines.
But it doesn’t stop there. The day before on the 6th (although in 1923), the Czech Republics, Czech Airlines came into being. And then there’s Cuba’s national carrier, Cuban, which got founded the day after (October 8th in 1929).
Basically, this is a big week to start an airline. So gather your friends (or should we just at this stage call them cabin crew) and prepare your departure cards for a red-eye flight that will last through the night.
Whether you check-in as a 1960’s stewardess, or whether you’re piloting this plane on a non-stop flight, it’s time to strap yourself in because we’re about to take off.
The obvious choice is to pull out the clear plastic cups and only provide tiny bottles of booze and a collection of bad canned mixers, but of course, that would be neither glamorous nor environmentally conscious. Instead, we recommend that if your cabin crew are after a cocktail something like the classic Aviation should easily fit the bill. And who better to present the video describing how to make it than their namesake Aviation Gin.
But why stop at a classic when you can throw in a modern classic that is a riff on the Last Word. We are talking of course about the Paper Plane, that wonderfully Bourbon-based drink created by legendary Manhattan barman Sam Ross.
Now while we normally only present two cocktails, we could resist the little known yet commonly held fact that a Bloody Mary suddenly becomes so much more appealing at 30,000 feet, so it might be worth throwing that tomato-y classic into the mix as well.
There is really no way to make Airline food glamorous. So we recommend that you feed your cabin crew exactly would they would receive on a flight – yep, the same weirdly divided tray that the rest of us get. And these trays are fairly easy to assemble. You can easily mix some raw vegetable like carrot and celery, with half a cheers and ham roll and some nuts.
A 3-Compartment Divided Plastic Kids Tray that comes in a set of 12 in 4 Assorted Colors can easily be found on amazon.com and if covered in plastic wrap with a little sticker, will provide your cabin crew with a memorable feast (by airline standards at least).
To ensure that the flight runs smoothly, it’s important that your cabin crew are appropriately attired. The image of Mid-Century stewardesses was one of the globe-trotting modern women who always looked professional, capable, and enthused. While Pilots were portrayed as clean-cut and conservative, with a white shirt, tie and cap and a buttoned blazer suggesting someone who knows what they were about.
Although we imagine there will be variations on this theme, after all, it was over 50 years ago, it’s fun to keep in mind that it was Pam Am, once they began operating their Sikorsky flying boats in the 1930’s, set the standard for smart tailor uniforms for both their pilots and stewardesses.
With this in mind, once it’s time to switch on the seat-belt sign, watching a few episodes of the critically acclaimed but sadly short-lived TV series Pan Am would make for perfect in-flight entertainment.
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