“I’m Mahir Asker*, and I’d love to take you out tonight.” Hours later, a Bentley arrived at the hotel to pick me up and a white-gloved driver helped me into the car, which escorted us to our date aboard Asker’s million-dollar yacht.
We spent the night sailing around the Persian Gulf, holding hands and munching on salmon tartare, lobster and caviar.
Shallow and concerned mainly with superficial matters is what comes to my mind!
Sitting in the drawing room of Dublin's Merrion Hotel, in full Emirates regalia, she turns heads - from businessmen passing by to the little girl at the next table. That’s not just for us, it’s for our families as well.
Fear, alcohol, boredom and close proximity are all key influences on the flight path to intimacy. "He'd never have spoken to me if we hadn't been seated together." Yet confronted by contact with a stranger, most of us can't put up the aerial shutters fast enough.
Out come the paperback, headphones, eyeshade, laptop - all essential armour against being squashed together with God-knows-who. While it's extremely rare for the lottery of seat allocation to throw up a life partner, a little high-altitude dalliance is far more common.
For some passengers, long-haul night flights are particularly romantic, as you wing your way over the deserts of the Gobi in the demi-monde of a 747."I'd only vaguely clocked Rolf," recalls Nicola Redwood, who met her tall, bronzed lover on a recent flight from Belize.
Travelling back from a business meeting in Portugal last year, Mandy Newton found love and a husband in the next seat. "He'd been playing golf with some mates, and got me talking by suggesting I add a little vodka to my tomato juice." Was it love at first flight?
So how did this farmer's daughter from Ballina, Co. You can nominate people for discounted tickets anywhere in the world. In Dubai, Emirates cabin crew have discount cards, so we get reductions in Dubai Mall and various water parks, gyms and attractions.
Mayo, get to travel the world and live a sky-high lifestyle on a tax-free salary? We can go free to night clubs like Armani, Cavalli, Movida. NB: Emirates also provides airport transfers, health insurance, a government pension scheme and an end of service gratuity, among other benefits.
I worked for a year in Australia, and one day I saw a sign saying: ‘Why work on the ground when you can work 40,000 feet in the air? Emirates employs around 23,000 cabin crew, but they do their best to accommodate us. So if you have Dublin and I have Vienna, we can swap, and everyone’s happy. After a long-haul flight you need a minimum of two days rest back in Dubai. You need to be culturally aware, because we fly to 120 destinations, we meet people from all walks of life. What’s your definition of a pretty face, after all? Every profession you could think of is represented on board. I fly with some crew who have been there 14 or 15 years. It’s so modern, so cosmopolitan; there are so many ex-pats there now and the Irish community is strong. Sure, It can get very hot – the hottest period lasts about eight weeks. We are visitors, and we have to respect their rules. If I have days off in Dubai, I can always just jump on a flight and come home.
I like longer flights, because you get your hours done, you get to see the destination, you come back and have time off. It could mean something different to different nationalities. We're from 130 countries, and some of our backgrounds would wow you. Our image is our brand, especially our uniform and the way we wear it. We come from different places, our skin colours are different, but our uniforms blend us as one. The good thing about Emirates is that your career can progress. The security is a big thing - the first contract is for three years. Home is where my heart is, and sometimes, people are surprised to hear I live in Dubai.