I flew to Moscow during the winter of 2020 and it was an extraordinary experience.
The Russian capital is 1,714 km distant from Belgrade by air, and the Air Serbia flight takes 2 hours and 45 minutes. Since this is a rather long flight, the cabin and flight crews sometimes stay overnight at the destination and work the return flight to Belgrade on the next day.
The night before the flight, I packed my case, ironed my uniform, shaved and prepared everything I needed for the working day ahead of me. When I got up, I checked if I had packed all the documents for the flight, put on my uniform, made coffee and watched television. This is my pre-flight routine, how I relax while I wait for the company shuttle bus to pick me up.
As usual, I went out in front of the building a couple of minutes early, because I always stick to the policy that it's better for me to wait for the shuttle bus than for it to wait for me. In the shuttle there was a colleague who was also going to Moscow. We chatted about what we were going to do during our stay in the Russian capital.
We were both excited!
We arrived at the airport about an hour and a half before the flight, where we took part in the company briefing and met the other crew members who were going to Moscow with us.
Briefing involves talking about what we expect during the flight – possible turbulence, how many passengers we have (adults, children, babies), flight duration and any special requirements.
Once on board the aircraft, we ran through the procedures to check everything that forms part of our duties before the passengers arrive. When passengers boarded the plane, we greeted them with our traditional hospitality, with a smile and a polite phrase. Since it was a night flight, most passengers fell asleep soon after take-off.
My colleagues and I completed our duties in the first phase of the flight. Then we sat down to a cup of coffee and talked about Moscow. We planned what we would do when we landed.
Once in Moscow, we first got some sleep. I remember my first impression of Moscow - I wondered why it was so cold. I had a feeling that winter was colder in Moscow than in Belgrade, though there is no great difference in temperature. Moscow is a huge and heavenly place! Everything smelled of Christmas. The coming New Year could be felt in every part of the city. It was magical. My enthusiasm could not be described in words! A truly wonderful experience.
I visited the famous Red Square and the beautiful St Basil’s Cathedral, an unbelievable sight! Not far from there lies the Kremlin, a wonderful complex of monumental architecture, and opposite is the State Historical Museum, the perfect place to take photographs. When you visit the Red Square you don’t know what to look at first, there are so many things to see in one place.
After visiting the Red Square, we headed to the Bolshoi Theatre, home of Russian ballet and opera, founded in 1825. The authentic and magnificent appearance of the theatre is another reason to visit this important cultural landmark.
After a long walk around the city, we decided to drink real Russian tea. On the way there, I came across a shop that made an impression on me. Mon Bon is a shop where you can buy the famous macaroons in all the colours of the rainbow. The macaroons look unreal - I actually wondered if they were meant to be eaten at all. As a great fan of macaroons, I couldn't pass without buying anything. Moscow is a dangerous city for sweets lovers! But that's not all, if you visit Moscow, you won't be able to resist the shops with jelly bonbons, which you can find on every corner. In these shops you can find all the possible jelly bonbons ever made. Walking around Moscow, I realized that there are also a lot of pastry shops. As the Australians would say - "The Russians have a really sweet tooth".
Moscow is a really big city, and the next time I have the opportunity to visit, I would like to visit New Moscow and the Museum of the History of Vodka.
The great thing about Air Serbia is that we have wonderful colleagues and friends, and we always have a good time together.
It’s really great to work for Air Serbia.
Author: Marinko Kovačević, cabin crew, Air Serbia