BY: Melissa Face
Nothing compares with the finding of true love; because once you do your heart is complete.
I wanted an exciting job. Sure, I needed to pay my bills along the way. But money was not the first thought on my mind when I accepted a job as a ticket agent for Midway Airlines. I was sold at the mention of free flights and buddy passes for my friends. I didn't even ask about my hourly wage. I didn't care.
Two days prior to my first day on the job, I called the company to find out a few things -- things I couldn't ask the lady who interviewed me.
"Is this job fun?"
"Uh, I guess," replied a baffled male voice.
"Good," I said. "I'm starting Wednesday. What are the other employees like?"
"Well, they are mostly male. A lot of us are in our twenties -- except for the boss and a couple of baggage handlers. It's pretty laid back though."
"Perfect. I'll see you then. By the way, what's your name?"
"Craig," he said. "Craig Face."
I showed up that Wednesday wearing khaki pants and a Midway polo. I had my ID badge made, filled out paperwork, and then my boss, Rizz, introduced me to my co-workers.
"I'm going to have you start training with Craig," Rizz said. "Shadow him for a while as he checks passengers in."
I recognized the name right away. He was the one I had spoken with on the phone. And in case there was a chance he had forgotten, I reintroduced myself.
"I remember you," he said shyly. "You wanted to know if this job was fun."
"Guilty!" I laughed.
"This isn't the fun part. But wait until we go out to meet the planes."
For the next couple of hours, I watched Craig book flights, hand out tickets, and assist with lost luggage. I learned about three-letter airport codes, the list of prohibited items, and how to check baggage. It was interesting -- but not exactly "fun."
Since Midway was a small airline, we were also responsible for meeting the arriving planes, guiding them in with glow sticks, and unloading the luggage. That was the next part I needed to learn.
"Let's go," Craig said. "We need to head out to the tarmac before the CRJ gets here."
"What's a CRJ?" I asked.
"It's a type of plane. It stands for Canadair Regional Jet."
Craig handed me a pair of ear protectors as we walked through the terminal. I wondered why I would need them but I put them around my neck just in case.
Once we were outside in the sun, Craig and I sat on a luggage cart and waited for our plane. I was starting to have fun. I felt an adrenaline rush just watching the plane's landing gear meet the runway.
Then, I watched Craig guide the aircraft towards the gate. His tan arms were outstretched and the sun was glistening off his dirty-blond hair. He looked extremely handsome and I realized I was staring at him.
I also realized that I needed my ear protection after all. The jet engines were deafening as the plane approached.
Craig and I (and the other employees) worked together at the airport for about a week. Then our supervisor said she was sending me to Raleigh for training.
"I'm going to send you and Craig," she said. "You guys started around the same time, so it should work out."
It definitely worked out. For two weeks, Craig and I went to class during the day and went out to dinner at night. We tried every restaurant within walking distance of RDU (Raleigh Durham International Airport) and stayed up talking and laughing until the early morning hours.
I was sad when the training was over. Craig and I had gotten to know each other very well and I had fallen for his witty comments and easy-going personality. It was an amazing experience.
But once we returned home, the job wasn't as exciting as it first seemed. It was hot out on the tarmac, the customers were rude, and I was hardly ever scheduled to work with Craig. I quit the job a couple of weeks later.
Some things just aren't meant to be. That job happened to be one of them. It was fun for a while, but I needed to get serious about my life. I needed to go back to school and finish my degree.
That's exactly what I did. I enrolled in a summer class and focused on my schoolwork. But I didn't completely abandon fun. I still went out on the weekends and enjoyed the local bands with my friends and classmates. And I dated Craig.
I don't know that I believe that everything in life happens for a reason. But I do believe some things do. I believe that I was meant to work for Midway Airlines. How else would I have met my future husband?
Craig and I have been together for nine years and married for five. We've shared a lot of special memories over the years, but few are as fond as our two-week training in Raleigh.
And he still loves to pick on me about our very first conversation.
"I can't believe you actually called a job to ask if it was fun," he says.
"I know. That was pretty silly of me. But at least I knew what I was looking for."
"I did too," he argues.
"Yeah. And I found her."